Friday, October 19, 2018

Kilts, Kilts and more Kilts!



The AGM (Annual General Meeting) of Clan Macbean of North America is taking place this weekend in Stone Mountain Park near Atlanta, Georgia. My husband and I signed-up to be part of the celebrations including a lunch buffet, a fancy dinner, and a barbecue poolside at the beautiful Stone Mountain Inn.

Of course, we will attend the Scottish Highland Games that are occurring Saturday and Sunday near the inn. Pictures help, so check back as I add more and photos of what is happening.


Surprise! I love cats!

We are members of both Clan MacBean and Clan Gunn Society. If you have any Scottish blood flowing through your veins, consider attending a Highland Game or festival. They take place all over the United States.


Found that Falconry exists!  


...and Scottish music comes in all varieties!



Friday, October 12, 2018

Nancy Lee Badger Presents Author Ryan Jo Summers

Ryan Jo Summers stopped by to share her latest release. A multi-publisher author, September’s Song is her first self-published novel. It is a Women’s Fiction/ metaphysical novel. Here are the particulars:

Book Blurb from September's Song
Ivey London was told her military husband died on a mission overseas. She buried him as a war hero and tried to move on with her life by raising their young son, dealing with her vengeful brother, and coping with her mother’s Alzheimer’s. Five years go by and one day she learns of a secret underground chamber were special soldiers are imprisoned to recover. Further, one amnesiac soldier managed to escape. When her son begins to display unusual behaviors, she goes to investigate. All evidence points to finding her late husband. If it is him, back from the dead, Ivey refuses to give him up again.

Keegan London awoke in a hospital cell with no memories. Fleeing, he finds himself in a strange, unknown world, with no one to turn to. Until he finds a friendly Priest who runs a homeless shelter and he stumbles across the woman who claims to be his wife. While she can fill some gaps in his lost memories, she cannot explain his curious abilities. Pursued by someone determined to get him back, Keegan has few options but to trust the woman who makes his heart fire like a cannon. Ivey has dibs on him, but first they have to uncover who—and what--Keegan really is before they can recover what they had.

EXCERPT 
     “No, that’s okay. I can do this by myself.” She spun around, blinking. Picking up the paring knife again, she began peeling. She gasped as his arms gently encircled her waist and his breath fanned her bare neck. His lips nuzzled her ear and she closed her eyes. His hand took the knife from her fingers and she leaned into his touch.

“Keegan,” his name came out in a throaty rumble as her eyes slid closed.

“I don’t know what we used to do, Ivey, but I can tell you miss it bad. I’m willing to try and be your husband again, if you’ll help me.”

Hot tears stung her eyes. She swallowed hard. “So many times you said I was unforgettable. I…I guess--.”

The comment died unfinished, and his fingers reached down and caressed her back. Electric jolts shivered along her spine. 

“Don’t push me away, Ivey. Let me be in each part of your life.”

Her breath hitched. This should be easy. Just tell him how they used to cook, what his favorite foods were, what they shared, how they made wonderful love. And miraculously all his memories will reappear. Except it hadn’t worked yet.

From the distant reaches of her mind, Ivey heard the phone ringing. Before she could pull herself away from the counter, it stopped. Assuming Jory answered it, the whole episode passed from her mind. Right now, Keegan took all her focus.

His fingertips trailed lazily up and down her back, igniting tiny fires in their wake.

“Keegan….I….” Words failed her. Heart beating frantically like a wild bird locked in a cage, her mind surrendered.

He gently turned her around, cupping her chin and tilting her up. Drawing a husky breath, he lowered his lips to hers, winding his fingers in the tangle of her hair. Her arms moved to encircle his waist, slipping under his shirt to feel the raised scars and corded muscles. A guttural moan escaped her.

Finally, having lost all concept of time, she pulled apart. Noble, he would not go further with a woman he did not remember making love to. She might respect his intention and restraint, but the unmet need was also killing her. Pulling in a shaky breath, she ended the kiss, stepping away and picking up the paring knife again.

She ran her tongue over her lips, more to steady herself, and rested one hand on the counter for balance. “I can work on this if you want to go see what Jory and Mom are doing.”

Keegan stiffened, hesitated and studied her. For a chilling moment, she hoped he ignored her request and lifted her bodily to carry her away to the bedroom. Then a darkness entered his eyes, a sadness that cut into her chest.

“Yes. Of course.” Spinning, he exited, leaving her alone with the ghosts of what had been.

Damn, damn, damn.

BUY LINKS for September's Song


Lulu        iTunes     KOBO


    


More About the Author
Ryan Jo Summers writes romances that blur the lines of subgenres. She mixes contemporary with time travel, Christian, suspense, sweet, and paranormal like blending a fruit and yogurt smoothie. Her non-fiction works have appeared in numerous trade journals and magazines including ‘WNC Woman Magazine’, ‘Critter Magazine’, ‘Journey Devotions’, and ‘Vet Tech Journal’. She is a regular contributing author for the ‘Asheville Pet Gazette’.

Her hobbies include baking, crafts, gardening, enjoying nature, and chess/mah-jongg/word-find puzzles. She pet sits/dog walks when she’s not busy writing and she fosters homeless pets for area animal rescues. She lives in a century-old cottage in North Carolina with her own menagerie of rescued pets and way too many houseplants. “September’s Song” is her second self-published work, the first one being the chronicles of the first two years with her adopted PTSD rescue collie. Connect with her here:

Website    Blog    Facebook 

Twitter    Google    Amazon 



Friday, October 5, 2018

Nancy Lee Badger Presents Author Linda Bennett Pennell


Linda Bennett Pennell stopped by to share her latest book. Let her tell you about it.

Thank you so much, Nancy!! Here are some of the details you asked for about my latest release from Soul Mate Publishing, Miami Days, Havana Nights.

Sometimes our biggest debts have nothing to do with money.

1926. When seventeen-year-old Sam Ackerman witnesses a mob hit, he is hustled out of New York under the protection of Moshe Toblinsky, A.K.A., the mob’s bookkeeper. Arriving in Miami with no money, no friends, and no place to hide, Sam’s only choice is to do as the gangster demands. Forced into bootlegging, Sam’s misery is compounded when he falls in love. Amazingly, the beautiful, devout Rebecca wants only him, but he cannot give her the life she deserves. When Prohibition ends, Sam begs the mobster to set him free. The price? A debt, as Toblinsky puts it, of friendship. A debt that will one day come due.

Present Day. History of American Crime professor Liz Reams has it all - early success, a tantalizing lead on new info about Moshe Toblinsky, and a wonderful man to love. Life is perfect. So what’s keeping her from accepting her guy’s marriage proposals? Confronting a long-standing personal debt sets her on a journey of self-discovery. While she delves ever deeper into Sam’s and Toblinsky’s relationship, her understanding of her own relationships increases as well, but the revelations come at a price. The emotional and physical dangers of her dual journeys may prove too big to handle.

Excerpt from Miami Days, Havana Nights

Chapter 1
May 18, 1926
105 South Street
New York City

Knocking - sharp, loud, rapid - echoed through the empty speakeasy. Sam froze, the notes of a tune stuck in the roof of his mouth. He glanced at the entrance and leaned the handle of his push broom against his shoulder. Puffs of dust settled on the floorboards around his feet while he remained motionless.
It was late, too late, to be admitting customers, even for the city's illegal watering holes and gambling joints. Although a thick crossbar and several stout locks protected the heavy iron door, an uneasy feeling crawled down Sam's spine. Growing tension over control of the Fulton Fish Market, in fact the entire South Street area, was making a lot of people jumpy, including him.
Several seconds passed without noise from the other side of the door. Sam let out his breath and laughed at himself. Working at the fish market in the afternoon then staying up half the night at the speakeasy didn't leave much time for sleep. It kept him on edge. All the rumors and threats floating around these days weren't helping either. Inclining his ear and hearing nothing, he relaxed and gave his broom a shove.
Bam, bam, bam.
Sam's heart jumped into his throat.
"Open up, Monza. I know you're in there." The shout, colored by an Irish lilt, came from the second floor landing accompanied by renewed pounding. "I come to talk with ya. We need to settle this business. I got a proposition for ya."
Sam's breathing kicked up a notch as he looked over his shoulder toward the office. The boss didn't like to be disturbed when he was meeting with his guys. The pounding from outside in the hall returned in earnest, but the office door remained fixed.
"You gonna open this damned door or do I break it down?" The doorknob rattled and jerked.
 Behind Sam, the office door clicked open an inch. He watched in the mirror over the bar as the muzzle of a .38 Special emerged from the opening, its nickel-plated barrel glittering in the overhead lights. One of the gangsters stepped into the room, met Sam's eye in the mirror, and jerked his head, then the room went dark. Sam dropped his broom and backed into an alcove next to the bar. The office door opened wider. Several shadows scurried across the floor. Metal locks and bolts snapped and clanked, then the entrance door swung inward…… 

Chapter 2
Present
Fall Semester
Gainesville, Florida

Crap. Not one blessed thing gained.
Liz bookmarked and closed the archival records web page she had paid a small fortune to access. Frustration knotted the muscles at the base of her skull. She stretched her back against the living room sofa and rolled her head and neck. Months of research and all she had to show for it was a regurgitation of everything everybody already knew. Maybe she was what she most feared – a one hit wonder destined to fade from her fifteen minutes of glory into ignominious mediocrity.
Jeez. How was that for a pretentious mouthful? Liz's lips thinned into a smirk accompanied by a quiet snort. Well, at least she could still laugh at herself. Unfortunately, some people might not find her so amusing.
She glanced across the room at Hugh. Liz drummed her fingers against the edge of her computer. He would probably understand if she didn't meet the deadline. Hugh was a good boss and a good... What? She never knew what to call the man she lived and worked with. Boyfriend sounded so lame, childish even. Boss tended to raise eyebrows. Fiancé would work if she had said yes to his most recent proposal.
Liz sucked the corner of her lower lip between her teeth. Of all the things she had ever thought herself to be, a commitment-phobe was not one of them. And now she was on the verge of disappointing him twice in one week. The new course she was designing could still be taught in the spring, but it would be incomplete as it stood now. She had incorporated a plethora of original details about Al Capone, et al., but new, riveting details on Moshe Toblinsky and the Jewish gangsters were proving elusive. As a consequence, Florida's Underbelly, 1920-Present: the Mob in the Sunshine State would probably fail to accomplish what the dean expected despite its titillating title. What a depressing thought.
Buzzing against Liz's thigh made her jump. She dug the phone out of her jeans pocket and looked at the caller ID. Her heart rate kicked up a notch. She slid her finger over the screen to take the call and listened to the monologue coming through the ether.
              Liz tapped the end call icon, slumped a little lower into the sofa cushions, and sucked her lower lip between her teeth. Apparently, nothing was going to go right today. 
Next to the living room window, Hugh lounged in an armchair with the latest historical monograph spread open on his lap, pretending he hadn't listened to her side of the phone conversation. When she didn't speak, he looked up from the book and raised his brows. 
"Well?" His voice was kind but direct.
"Well what?"
"What was in that call to make you look so stormy?"
Liz sighed and crammed her phone into her jeans pocket. "Aunt Mildred says Daddy is going downhill faster than anyone thought possible, something Mom decided to keep from me. Yesterday, he wandered away from the house and was gone for hours. Mom was on the verge of calling the police when a neighbor brought him home. The neighbor stopped Daddy trying to board the ferry to Whidbey Island. He said he had to report for duty at the naval air station." Liz hunched her shoulders and shook her head. "He retired from the Navy in 1995."

Buy link for Miami Days, Havana Nights


More About the Author

Anything with a history, whether shabby or majestic, recent or ancient, instantly draws me in. I suppose it comes from being part of a large extended family that spanned several generations. Long summer afternoons on my grandmother's porch or winter evenings gathered around her fireplace were filled with stories both entertaining and poignant. Of course being set in the American South, those stories were also peopled by some very interesting characters, some of whom have found their way into my work.

As for my venture in writing, it has allowed me to reinvent myself. We humans are truly multifaceted creatures, but unfortunately we tend to sort and categorize each other into neat, easily understood packages that rarely reveal the whole person. Perhaps you, too, want to step out of the box in which you find yourself. I encourage you to look at the possibilities and imagine. Be filled with childlike wonder in your mental wanderings. Envision what might be, not simply what is. Let us never forget, all good fiction begins when someone says to her or himself, "Let's pretend." 

I reside in the Houston area with one sweet husband and one adorable German Shorthaired Pointer who is quite certain she’s a little girl.

"History is filled with the sound of silken slippers going downstairs and wooden shoes coming up." Voltaire  

Connect with Linda Bennett Pennell here:

WEBSITE     FACEBOOK     TWITTER

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Friday, September 28, 2018

Nancy Lee Badger Presents Author Sally Brandle

While a witness and FBI agent escape mobsters, they can’t escape falling in love. The Hitman’s Escape, released from Soul Mate Publishing June 27, 2018, is a clean, contemporary, romantic suspense story.

Book Blurb
She needs his trust. After Miranda Whitley stops crooked cops from assassinating a prominent Seattle judge, she’s next on the hit list, and her survival depends on the man she’s had one awkward encounter with—buff FBI Agent, Grant Morley. But can she find him in time?

He needs the truth. The last person Grant expects to discover on his annual horseback trip delivering supplies to a Montana mountain hermit is alluring Miranda Whitley, nearly dead from a bullet wound in her side. An accidental witness or the cold-blooded accomplice to would-be assassins?

Miranda must convince Grant of her innocence, evade the killers intent on preventing her testimony, and fight her unwanted attraction for the agent…an attraction which seems to be mutual. Fortunately, love thrives in Emma Springs. If you love sizzling chemistry, determined assassins, and Montana scenery, then you’ll love Sally Brandle’s galloping thriller.

The Author on Lance


Setting: Our heroine’s pruning indoor plants in the lobby of Seattle’s Justice Building after hours.

Soft taps came from a few feet behind her. She tilted her head.
Footsteps? From the stairwell? Miranda released her grip, and the tree limb sprang free. She swung her head and watched the branch skim the fly of the trousers on the man now towering over her right shoulder.
Not Ike. She froze.
“Oh, didn’t see you there—” he sidestepped, and her cup scrunched in protest under his big boot. The lid popped off and the double shot of Kona glugged into a mocha-scented pool.
He jumped to avoid the puddle. “Energy conservation put you in the shadows. Sorry, I nailed your coffee.” His swinging backpack missed her nose by inches.
She twisted her body and scooted her butt until her shoulder jammed against a carved pot.
“I didn’t mean to frighten you.”
“It’s okay,” she mumbled, keeping her head lowered to avoid further contact with the bag-wielding klutz wearing black trousers. Must’ve been him she’d glimpsed a few minutes ago, while the elevator doors had closed on the floor below Ike’s.
“I’ve never been attacked by a branch. Must say, you deployed it well,” the deep voice announced. He stopped directly in front of her.
His hiking boots made her size-nine high-tops appear dainty.
Not the shoes of a snobby lawyer or a lost, post-trial pimp trying to find his way out of the building. Still, the flailing branch served him right for sneaking up on her. “I didn’t hear you.”
“And I shouldn’t text and walk,” he said in a lighter, almost sexy tone. “I’m Grant.” He dropped his pack and stuck out his hand.
An FBI tag printed ‘GRANT MORLEY’ hung from the bag.
She peered from under her cap’s brim and gulped.
Him.
Agent of Interest. Her heart took off at a gallop.

BUY LINKS

Amazon     Amazon UK





Also check out:






More About the Author
Multi-award winning author Sally Brandle weaves slow-burning romance into edgy suspense stories. Sally left a career as an industrial baking instructor to bring to life stories motivating readers to trust their inner gifts. Her rescue Aussie is her companion during long spells of writing, bouts of tormenting weeds in her garden, or afternoons spent riding on the wind with her twenty-eight year old Quarter Horse. Sign up for her newsletter at www.sallybrandle.com for a free segment of her latest book, The Hitman’s Mistake. Watch for the second book in her Love Thrives in Emma Springs series, Torn By Vengeance, which will release on April 10, 2019. Connect with Sally here:


Website    Facebook    Twitter     Pinterest     Goodreads




Saturday, September 22, 2018

Where This Writer Finds Ideas

The author & her sons

Time spent volunteering can turn into something I can take back with me and put into a book. The New Hampshire Highland Games & Festival is an annual event that brings my family together. We live in North Carolina and the others live in upstate Vermont (so close to Canada you can smell the snow). Meeting up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire gives us a chance to spend quality time together, while we help NHScot.org promote Scottish life. Yes, and it gives me ideas for many more books. 



The first book came to me while working the games and happens to be my biggest seller. My Honorable Highlander teams up a present day woman attending the fictional New England Highland games and the laird of a clan in sixteenth century Scotland.

The book is available in ebook, print and audio, and is followed


10 hour Audio Book is available

by other full-length stories pairing people from these different times. The central theme includes Highland games.

Check out the buy links of all the books HERE

More photos to come....

Friday, September 14, 2018

Nancy Lee Badger Presents Author Michelle Jean Marie


Author Michelle Jean Marie stopped by to share with us her new book. She is also published with Soul Mate Publishing. Take it away!

TEMPTING PASSION is an historical romance set in 1856 England. It is the sequel to TEMPTING FATE, my first published novel.  So if you’ve read the first book, you’ll recognize some of the characters in this one. Plus be introduced to some fun new ones! TEMPTING PASSIONS is available for pre-order now, with a release date of September 19th. 

BLURB:
A Man Shattered
Marcus Clayton, Earl of Norbourne, has it all – power, wealth, respect, the freedom of bachelorhood, a woman’s companionship. Then in the space of seconds, his world is shattered and a life is lost. Blaming himself for the tragedy, Marcus Aurelius Clayton adopts the Stoic credo as his new way of life and vows to never again allow a woman to rule his passions.
A Woman Shamed
Miss Christel Fitzwilliam lives life with passion despite her simple life. Her father dotes on her, and her mother despises her because of it. After Christel’s father dies, a scandal is revealed, shaming the family. Christel’s mother blames her for the disgrace, and over the years, the scathing words wear down her resolve, until she too, questions her convictions.
A Goal Shared
When Christel learns of her mother’s plan to trap Marcus into an unwanted marriage with her younger sister, Christel vows to save the earl from a fate he doesn’t deserve. Marcus appreciates her concern, but having renounced all passion, is confident he can defeat the plan on his own. A determined and passionate Christel convinces him otherwise, and sets out to help him.
But in trying to save the earl, will her passion be her undoing?

EXCERPT
From Chapter One:
Removing her high-crowned hat, Miss Fitzwilliam tossed her gloves inside, wound the veil about the brim, and placed the bundle on his desk.
Her hair was the color of roasted chestnuts, Marcus noted. Pulled into a bun at the nape of her neck, it matched her full brows. The front of her coiffure draped loosely over her ears, and he discerned a shimmer of cinnamon within its waves. ‘Like Twilight’s, too, her dusky hair. 
He forced the image from his mind. He couldn’t risk entanglement. Not after his last fateful experience. The resulting pain had been unbearable. He hoped to never again experience such loss. And he wouldn’t if he kept his distance. If he kept his heart closed. “Pardon me if I’m not quite understanding you, but could we start at the beginning?”
“Certainly.” Miss Fitzwilliam plopped into his revolving chair, eyes widening in surprise when it swung sideways beneath her. She gripped the arms of the chair and planted her feet into the plush green rug. Wonder slowly dissolved into mischief as a hoydenish gleam danced in her eyes. Giving a tentative push with her right toe, she swung the chair back in the opposite direction.
Marcus caught the shimmer in her eyes as she pushed the chair back around again. He grinned. “It is an American contraption. I discovered it at the Exhibition back in ‘51.”
Her mouth quirked in amusement. “It is quite delightful. Papa would have loved one.” She gave the chair another push before turning to finally meet his gaze with shining eyes.
He inhaled sharply. It was a moment before he could breathe again. Speak again. “I believe you still owe me an explanation.”
“That I do.” She swung the chair back and forth in tiny arcs as she talked. “My mother is under the impression, erroneous or otherwise, that the reason you are hosting this house party is because you want a wife.”
He grimaced. “I wouldn’t say that, exactly.”
Miss Fitzwilliam brought the chair to a standstill. “You don’t want a wife, then?”
Marcus crossed an ankle over the opposite one, propping his front foot on the toe of his riding boot. A wife?

Buy Links:  Amazon 


More About the Author
After years of working in the Health Information Management field, Michelle became a stay-at-home mom to raise two adorable daughters and took advantage of her time at home to pursue a life-long passion--writing. While attending a romance writing workshop at a local library, Michelle was hooked. She cracked open the research books, turned on the computer, and started cranking out historical romances. In her early efforts, she was an RWA Golden Heart finalist and winner/finalist in many RWA sponsored contests.
 
After ending one marriage, seeing her daughters through college, opening her own business, and finally happily marrying her soul mate, she opened those old computer files and did some serious editing. She signed her first publishing contract with Soul Mate Publishing more than twenty years after writing it. Perseverance does pay off! Michelle lives in the Chicago suburbs with her husband and their three insane pups. Their two-legged children have all moved on to their own homes and careers. By day, she runs a professional organizing business, a virtual assistant business, and a research web site. Her favorite clients are authors! 

By night, she writes. She self-published "Researching the British Historical: The Victorian Era," "101 Organizing Tips for Writers," "I'm Moving!! Now What?" and co-authored "Nine Journeys: Stories of Women Who Found Their Own Paths to Success." 
In her spare time, she loves to read, take walks, and keep her mind sharp with Sudoku puzzles. She also does volunteer work for the Midwest Akita Rescue Society.
For more information about Michelle and her endeavors, connect with her here"

WEBSITE     FACEBOOK     TWITTER



Friday, September 7, 2018

Nancy Lee Badger Presents Author Jeanne Oates Estridge


Since I happen to LOVE demons and enjoy writing about them, I invited Jeanne to stop by and share her brand new book.Take it away!

The Demon Always Winsthe first book of my Touched by a Demon series, was released September 1st. It is a retelling of the story of Job as a paranormal dark comedy. Because what could be funnier than the story of Job? .

Book Blurb:
After beating Satan at poker, demon Belial takes on a new bet: If he can get God’s champion to curse God, within the agreed timeframe, Hell gains another soul and Belial earns a promotion to chief demon. 
The demon always wins, but this time the deck may be stacked against him. Widowed nurse Dara Strong, the granddaughter of famous demon fighters, has no problem recognizing Belial, so when he appears in her clinic in doctor’s disguise, she kicks him out.  
But Belial, the most successful soul-stealer in the history of Hell, is not about to give up so easily, and as their conflict escalates, so does their passion.  Caught between a victory-hungry Satan and an unforgiving God, Belial and Dara discover there may be only one way to ransom the soul of a fallen angel: sometimes you have to go through Hell to claim your Heaven.
Buy Link:   AMAZON    

:
More About the Author
Jeanne Oates Estridge wrote her first short story in third grade, a tale of birth-control-challenged bunnies who named their children in alphabetical order—Alice, Benjamin, Cathy, Dexter—all the way down to baby Zachary. Later that year, when given an assignment to depict what she wanted to be when she grew up, Jeanne drew herself in a floor-length, crayon-blue dress, sitting at a typewriter. Life has a way of handing us detours, though, and Jeanne wound up earning her degree, and her living, as a computer analyst. She continued to write at night and on weekends, but she could never quite manage to write anything that satisfied her. But she didn’t give up. In 2012, she returned to college to earn a Master’s Certificate in Creative Writing at the Nora Roberts’ School of Romance Writing at McDaniel College. Working under the mentorship of NYT Bestseller and former high school English teacher Jenny Crusie, Jeanne wrote a novel that went on to win the 2015 RWA® Golden Heart® for Paranormal. The Demon Always Wins, the first book of her Touched by a Demon trilogy, is now available on Amazon. Connect with her here:

WEBSITE     FACEBOOK     TWITTER