SHE’S INCOGNITO!

2013 card reverse 500dpi

Doesn’t that look cute?

It’s one side of my business card. Hugo designed it and there’s a reason why I’m telling you this.

My first book was published at the beginning May 2012. And although it was an event that thrilled, it also terrified the bejesus out of me. It was a leap into the unknown, a bit like giving birth to my first child.

My immediate family obviously know I’m a romance writer but they tend to keep it quiet and that’s fine.

My youngest daughter mentioned it to her pals and they laughed and said, ‘Are the books like that Fifty Shades of Grey woman?’ As I’ve said before, I get that all the time. And she said, ‘No. They’re better.’ Bless her little heart, how’s that for mother love?

My son just gives me the look which says, ‘As if!’ when I ask him if he’s told his pals.

Fair enough, boys are sensitive, I get it.

Anyway, No 1 daughter has kept the fact her mother is a romance author a carefully guarded secret.

Until recently.

Why she’s suddenly found the need to spread the word in our town I’ve no idea – might have something to do with the fact that her mother’s books were all in the top 100 in iTunes over the festive period. I know, it stunned me too.

So the Thursday before Christmas I was doing the usual female thing of having my hair done at Toni & Guy (shameless plug – Sumin is THE best) and Sumin told me about the fabulous deal for Christmas toilet paper in Marks & Spencer (upmarket supermarket) three packs for the price of two.

Well, I had to have it! I mean, who could resist?

But here’s the thing, it was raining (no surprises there, this is the UK and the way things are going the country is going to float into the Atlantic) and since I’m always prepared, I wore a waxed peak cap to protect the ‘doo (a sleek blonde bob, which comes just above my shoulders for anyone who’s remotely interested).

So, grabbing a basket I surfed through the food section of Marks & Spencer, picked up a few luxury items, including the toilet paper and headed for the check-out. I absolutely refuse to use the self-service check-outs because I prefer dealing with a human. Although after the trauma of what happened next I might change my mind.

Now working at the check-out was a girl I hadn’t seen in ages. She’s lovely and always chats to me, and my daughters when they go in for the odd thing.

As she finished serving the lady in front of me, she looked up and her eyes went really big.

‘Well, helloooooooo you!’ she cried in a very high voice.

I grinned.

What a sweetie.

‘Hello to you too,’ I said. ‘Merry Christmas.’

She stood, leaned over the till and grabbed my hand and squeezed tight. ‘It’s sooooo amazing to see you!! You look fabulous.’

I do? Gosh, I thought, I must come in here more often.

‘Your daughter’s told me all about you!’

‘Did she? Which one?’

‘I can never tell them apart, they’re so gorgeous!’

I grinned again flushed with maternal pride.

By this time there were about six ladies behind me. I glanced at them and gave a nervous laugh.

After all it’s Christmas and like most women they all looked in a hurry and a bit wild-eyed.

‘Thank you,’ I said and tried to take my hand from hers.

She clung on like a limpet and there was a sort of crazy gleam in her eye.

She smiled at the ladies in the queue. ‘This!’ she announced and held up my hand, ‘Is a best-selling author.’

I swear my heart stopped.

A hot flash burned up my neck into my cheeks.

Omigod!

Every woman within twenty yards all turned to stare. I’m telling you I PRAYED for the floor to open up and take me.

‘No, no, I’m not a best seller,’ I whimpered.

‘What do you write?’ piped up a very smart lady in her sixties.

‘Romance,’ I said in a voice that didn’t sound anything like me.

‘Ahh,’ said another woman. ‘Like Fifty Shades of Grey?’

‘Noooo,’ cried the girl serving me. ‘She’s much better.’

Omigod!

‘I do like a good sex scene,’ the lady in her sixties informed the entire store without a blush.

‘So do I,’ said another check-out girl behind mine. She didn’t turn round, she just kept serving a man who looked as if he’d rather be anywhere else except in Marks & Spencer listening to a group of over-sexed women.

During all this my toilet paper was winging its way through the scanner.

Still beaming at me, my check-out girl looked at the queue who were all watching me.

I nodded, gave them big eyes and smiled.

‘We have quite a lot of authors in this town,’ the woman in her sixties cocked her head to watch me hand over my bank card. I keyed in my pin. Her mouth kept flapping, ‘You should do a talk at the library.’

No chance.

‘Good idea. I’d come to that,’ another woman said.

By this time I was trying really hard not to laugh like a lunatic and was putting the card in my purse.

‘Do you have a business card?’ The woman in her sixties asked.

‘I do,’ I said. And handed her one.

‘Please will you autograph one for me,’ my check-out girl begged.

Omigod!

By this time I was pledging never, ever to set foot in the store for as long as I live.

‘Sure.’ I signed it, grabbed my bags.

‘Oh look, she’s wearing a hat! She’s travelling incognito!’ the check-out girl from hell cried.

‘No, no. I’ve had my hair done and it’s raining. Seriously. Can I just say that you’re totally insane?’ I told her.

She just laughed, stood up and grabbed me in a big hug.

‘I’m going to spread the word, tell all my family and my friends.’

I bit down really hard on my bottom lip. ‘You’re very kind,’ I said.

As I hightailed it through the store towards the exit, I couldn’t help it. I cried laughing.

And do you know that three people stopped me to ask if I was alright?

Who says kindness is dead?

I haven’t been back. Not yet. But when I do its dark glasses and a ski cap with a muffler for me, or maybe I’ll use the self-service check-out. Might be safer.

Have you ever been mortified by someone in your life?

Come and share it with us, knowing you lot there’ll be lots of good ones!

Big Hug,

Christine x

I’M IN MALTA!

Okay, so I’m not actually in Malta.

I’m a guest on the wonderful blog of writer Natalie G. Owens and she lives in Malta, so it’s the next best thing.

But before I chat about what I’m doing in Malta, I wanted to share with you guys something a lovely reader sent me on Christmas Eve.

by reader, Jane Aschtgen Bowen

by reader, Jane Aschtgen Bowen

Isn’t the pic fabulous?

About a month ago Natalie asked if she could interview me on my writing process for her blog and quite innocently I said yes.

What popped into my inbox was an interrogation interview the length of War & Peace.

When Natalie read it she decided to spread the interview over two days. So if you’re interested in how, why and where I write and how I come up with characters and story lines then get yourselves over to Natalie’s blog HERE.

The lovely Natalie is also offering a Rafflecopter on her site where (since it’s season for giving) ten lucky winners will win all three of The Ludlow Hall series and book one in my Vampyre Legal Chronicles series, Big Trouble in China.

Christine x

 

Christmas pranks and poo

Unless you’re one of the Bah Humbug brigade, you might have noticed Chrimbo (Christmas) is coming!

And I promised you faithfully that once Rosie was out there normal service would be resumed on this blog.

Come closer because do I have a Chrimbo treat for you.

Meet the beautiful, the talented, the wonderful award winning author Tamara Ward who has come along to talk about Christmas poo. Yes, poo. Tamara’s one of those people who looks perfectly normal, sounds perfectly normal… Until… you read her books. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read one of her heroines and shook my head at the situations she gets them into and howled with laughter. And that’s the thing about Tamara she makes us laugh. If you’ve never read her then you are in for a treat!

Take it away, Tamara!

Tamara Ward

Tamara Ward

I’ve always loved a good prank. Perhaps it was bred into me as I come from a family of pranksters. Having a prank pulled on you meant you were loved.

My prankster training began when I was young; my mom encouraged me to put toothpaste and tape on my father’s face as he napped on the couch. That was before I whipped mud into a glass of water and presented it to my dad as chocolate milk. I remember the moment, my dad outside in the dry New Mexico heat, his face sweaty, the look he gave me when he thought I cared so much for him that I mixed up a cool treat especially for him, his eyes surprised at my thoughtfulness and full of love. (That look made me abort the prank before he tasted the beverage, so instead of getting a spanking I escaped with a glare, my gut twisting with guilt.)

No, I’m not sweet. And it was good that my dad learned this early in my childhood so I could get the disappointment over with sooner, rather than later.

As a teen, my dad and brother ganged up on my boyfriends, feeding them plastic burgers and asking them how they liked them, pulling the boys in a tube behind our boat, promising they’d give the boys a fun ride when really they had the boys clinging to the tube handles while they were hurled around at breakneck speeds. They boys would call me to complain of whiplash when they woke up the next morning! And of course I played along.

After I moved out of my parents’ house, my history of pranks continued and expanded beyond those involving family members. I met a friend who liked pulling pranks as much as me. Once, we taped paper over a cute boy’s apartment door and filled up the space between the door and the paper with popcorn. When he opened the door the following morning all the popcorn cascaded into his living room. Nothing says “I like you” like a mess on the carpet as you’re hurrying out of your apartment late for a class.

As for Christmas pranks, my brother began our family’s tradition of passing the Christmas poo along with a prank holiday gift. Actually, that was his gift to me one year, a Christmas poo on a keychain. That is, South Park’s Mr. Hankey, THE Christmas Poo, on a keychain. According to South Park, Mr. Hankey, the Christmas poo, “comes out of the toilet every year,” visiting girls and boys who have fiber in their diets.

At the time my brother gifted me Mr. Hankey on a keychain, I found that particular episode of the crude, politically incorrect South Park pretty funny. So did my brother. But a plastic turd on a keychain – what was my brother thinking? How could he possibly think I’d want something like that for Christmas? So the next year I returned his gift to him, along with another prank gift. And back and forth it went. One year, my brother gave me a shirt with his photo on it. The poo keychain had been wrapped inside the shirt. The next year I gave him a shirt with a photo of me wearing the shirt with his photo on it, as well as Mr. Hankey.

Another year, I recorded my cat meowing on one of those handheld recorders. (Pepper used to be my brother’s cat, but the cat ultimately chose me over my bro as I didn’t throw it down the stairs and see if he stuck the landing repeatedly.) It took days of following my cat around and working up to about 30 minutes of cat noise. I taped the recorder in a sizable cardboard box and hit the “play button” when I was about to reach my folks’ house. Then I turned on one of those battery-operated balls that rolls around randomly. I sealed the box and pretended nothing was up, stuck the box under my folks’ tree, and watched my brother freak out as he heard the meows and saw the box moving. He really thought I was returning his cat to him! Nope. It was just the Christmas poo.

Another year, my brother returned Mr. Hankey to me by placing him inside my baby’s diaper and having my mom tell me my baby smelled like he needed a change. I opened the diaper, and there was Mr. Hankey! This year, it’s my turn to give Mr. Hankey back to my bro. He and his wife are expecting their firstborn, and in anticipation of this event I kept some flyers I found particularly helpful from when I was figuring out how to handle a baby. One of those flyers is entitled “Poops of the Breastfed Baby” and is a glossy, full-color flyer showing photographs of baby poops. Each photo has a caption explaining what you’re seeing. So there’s, “Sometimes baby’s first poop is black and tarry.” And “Breastfed babies’ poop is often yellow and runny.” There’s at least a dozen photographs. I framed the flyer and taped Mr. Hankey to the glass on the front. 😀 Hope my bro appreciates all the poo that will be coming his way, and soon.

Speaking of Christmas pranks, my latest release features just that (though nothing nearly as disgusting as Christmas poo). In Jade O’Reilly and the 12 Days of Christmas, private investigator Jade O’Reilly thought her worst Christmas dilemma involved finding the perfect gift for her significant other. That was before she agreed to help Agnes Sturgis, the crankiest old biddy in all of Sweetwater, NC. Every day, for the twelve days leading up to Christmas, Agnes wakes up to a yard filled with Christmas decorations. But in Agnes’s opinion, “they’re not decorations; they’re property damage!”

Finding the person responsible for the scenes of yuletide merriment that Agnes demolishes every morning is not easy. With stealth and skill that rival Santa’s elves, the decorator strikes Agnes’s yard and eludes Jade and her surveillance equipment. Will Jade catch the decorator before Christmas morning?

The ebook is available in all formats for $0.99! AmazonB&NSmashwords, Kobo

 

jade_christmas_final

 

So, do you have any good pranks, Christmas or otherwise, to share? Let me know! I’ll be dropping by before and after my Sisters in Crime meeting today, and I can’t wait to hear any naughty or nice pranks that have made an impact on those around you!

Drum roll, foot stomp for Tamara Ward, ladies and gentlemen!

Thank you for coming on my blog today. Please come back, we’re a lovely bunch!

What do undead monkeys and Nelson’s Tea have in common?

Today I have a guest blogger – the  historical author, the wonderful, the awesome, Katherine Bone!

KatherineBoneWebPhoto20075089

I’m so grateful to Christine for inviting me to post on her blog today. Thanks, girl!!  😉

Ahoy, me hearties! I’m Katherine Bone and my tagline is Rogues, Rebels & Rakes. I write about adventure, passion and romance, and alpha heroes who’ll do anything to protect the ones they love. Regency romance is my favorite genre, but I write a bit of contemporary too. Because of that, I happened to meet Christine via the 2011 HQN Mills & Boon New Voices Contest. (Boom goes the undead monkey!)

Pirates used the sea to pilfer treasure ripe for the taking. Thankfully, I don’t have to board a ship to find a treasure like Christine. Modern technology enables me to make friends and forge long distance friendships without the long voyage, undead monkeys, or dangerous seas. The world is a small place, me hearties. As a military brat, wife and mother, I’ve had great opportunities and made friends all over the world. And so— as Christine and I both entered the HQN M&BNVC, it wasn’t a surprise that we discovered a shared passion for romance books.

I actually blogged about this 9/28/11 at Okay, Listen Here, Finding the Positive

By the time I met Christine, my book Pirate by Night had been sitting with HQN Mills & Boon Historicals for a year and I’d written the first chapter of my first contemporary Lost Treasure, Captive Princess for the HQN Presents line. My entry didn’t place, but I finished the book, which will release March 4th, via Crimson Romance.  (12 gun salute!)  And, I rewrote Pirate by Night to fit the single title market, submitted it to Crimson Romance as Duke by Day, Rogue by Night and got The Call on June 11, 2011. The first book in my Nelson’s Tea Series, Duke by Day, Rogue by Night released October 29th.

The idea for Duke by Day, Rogue by Night began when Pirates of the Caribbean starring Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow, brought pirates back into fashion, along with romance authors Katharine Ashe, Shana Galen, Jennifer Ashley, Shannon Drake, and Michelle Beattie. (Thanks for paving the way, mates!)

I absolutely love historical research as much as I love pirates! Savvy. You can check out my passionate discoveries on my Pinterest boards here: http://pinterest.com/katlbone/ (When in research mode, it’s like being stuck in Davy Jones’ Locker at Worlds End. 😉

Research, however, offers interesting discoveries. For instance, did you know that piracy didn’t end with the Golden Age? Most everyone knows about the action along the Barbary Coast. But Benito Del Soto pirated along the European Coastline until 1833 when he was caught and hanged. Smuggling persisted along the Cornish Coast for many years afterward.

Discoveries are EPIC! They’re like a map that guides you to buried treasure. So I held my compass and pointed it to what I wanted most, and set my looking glass on a Regency series set between 1804-1805, leading up to the battle at Trafalgar. Twenty men, first sons from every tier of life, trained mercenaries above suspicion, serve Admiral Nelson and his subordinate, Simon Danbury.

Another interesting fact: Nelson never went without his tea, even during battle. So it was fitting to name his mercenary group Nelson’s Tea, the word tea being code for any mission involving his inconspicuous men, primarily one Marques in line to a dukedom, a naval officer eager to move up the ranks, and a smuggler with ties to the Cornish Coast.

Ladies and gentleman, I give you a blurb for Duke by Day, Rogue by Night:

Constance Danbury is fleeing an arranged marriage to lecherous Lord Burton, a man who has blackmailed her father and is nearly twice her age. Her escape takes her aboard a merchantman bound for Spain, where she hopes an aunt will help her procure funds to save her father’s dwindling reputation. But fate intervenes. Constance is captured by a pirate with a wit and stubbornness to match her own, and a secret he’ll do anything to keep.

Nobleman Percival Avery is a member of Nelson’s Tea, an elite group whose members are first sons from every tier in society. Undercover, he disguises himself as a pirate to infiltrate the gang of cutthroats responsible for his sister’s death. But when his vessel attacks a merchantman with valuable cargo, Percy is forced to choose between vengeance and saving the life of his commander’s niece, Constance Danbury. Mutiny is sure to obliterate his well-laid plans. It also aligns him with the one woman sure to see through his disguise. Forced to play the fop by day to outwit his enemies, he masquerades as a rogue by night in order to avenge his sister’s death – and to win his true love’s heart.

Duke by Day, Rogue by Night is a rollicking romp of a pirate romance in the classic style. From ship deck to London ballroom, Katherine Bone’s story is packed with intrigue, and the disguise of her rough and dangerous hero as a town popinjay positively delights.” – Katharine Ashe, author of Captured by a Rogue Lord

“Katherine Bone is an author after my own heart! Duke by Day, Rogue by Night is a sexy, adventurous romp guaranteed to keep you reading into the wee hours of the night.” – Shana Galen, author of The Rogue’s Pirate Bride

Bio: Katherine Bone lives in the south where she dreams of rogues, rebels, and rakes and the happily ever afters every Alpha male deserves. 

Here’s an excerpt:

“Where are my clothes?”

“You’ll not be needing them,” he said.

She struggled to breathe. “What do you mean I’ll not be needing my clothes?”

Even before the question came out of her mouth, his meaning was clear. An abysmal vulnerability unlike any she’d ever experienced forced a heated blush into her cheeks. He stepped closer, looming above her like a hawk stalking prey. She shrank back, scurrying on her hands and feet until her back braced against the wall, intent on putting as much space between herself and the deplorable scoundrel as possible.

“Nothing can come between us, Constance, including clothes.”

His alarming grin proved he meant to ensure every word. Beads of sweat broke out on her brow as her mind labored for a response. Something wicked churned in her stomach as her mind labored over a memory, the sensation of the two of them without clothes, their bodies scandalously intertwined, his warm fingers, comforting touch, and his heart pounding underneath her ear.

“How do you know my name?” she squeaked, trying desperately to block out the condemning images.

“Did you honestly expect me to believe your lies about being Admiral Duncan’s daughter? The man died quite seasoned. His daughters most assuredly wed and bedded before you were born.” His penetrating gaze darted over her body. “How old are you?” he asked. “I wager nineteen — at most.”

He moved closer, his knee resting on the edge of the bunk. Reaching out to grab a lock of her hair, he added, “Too young to be Duncan’s daughter,” he continued, “and far prettier.”

Unsettled, she snatched back her hair. Indignantly, she spat, “You irritating simpleton! My age is of no consequence to you.”

“Yet you claim to be one of Admiral Duncan’s daughters. Who is the simpleton?”

“Are you calling me a liar?”

“If I must,” he said with a wave of his hand, acting as if the effort drained him. But it was the look in his eye that warned her not to insult him again.

She quivered. He stood and crossed the room until he was positioned by the door again. He leaned against it and crossed his arms over his chest, once again causing her eyes to feast on his toned, lean body. The black shirt he wore accentuated his weathered skin. His dark hair, mustache, beard, and eye patch emphasized the reticent set of his jaw. His hair flowed loosely about his shoulders. The red scarf around his forehead stood out like the blush of a cardinal attracting a mate. For the first time, she noticed a gold hoop in his left ear as he dropped his head to the side to observe her with disdain.

“Where am I?” Her voice cracked. She hated being vulnerable, hated herself for thinking the man slightly handsome.

His mustached lip curled upward as if he’d been waiting for such a cue. He stepped away from the door.

“You’re aboard the Striker. Don’t you remember?”

She turned away from him and gazed out the spacious window to replay the previous night’s events in her mind. Her heart raced as bone-chilling images proved she had much to be grateful for where he was concerned. She averted his gaze, hoping to hide the fear listing her heart. Indeed, she remembered all too well that pirates had stormed through her cabin door. She recalled the first time she’d set eyes upon him. She remembered Captain Collins and that heartless brigand, Frink, tearing at her clothes. A tear slipped out of the corner of her eye. Light and moist, it tickled her skin, reminding her of being weighted down by water. She remembered nearly drowning. She remembered hearing her mother’s voice. She remembered him.

“I remember … ,” she admitted, “you saved me from drowning.”

“And I brought you to my cabin,” he finished for her.

“Where’s Captain Frink? Is this his ship?”

“Do not worry your pretty little head about him. He’ll do you no more harm.”

“And Mrs. Mortimer?” Fear took hold when he did not answer. She only vaguely remembered her dearest governess being carried out of the cabin. What had happened to her? Had she been passed from one man to the next like a communal jug of rum?

He approached her slowly, sat down on the edge of the bed and leaned closer, making her heart flutter. “Mrs. Mortimer?”

“Yes,” she replied. “My traveling companion. Is she all right? Is she alive?”

“That crafty old witch is fine. She’s in another cabin.” He held up his hand when she began to ask another question. “Rest assured she is well.” He placed his finger on her lips to silence her when she tried to speak.

Constance brushed his finger away. “Why are we separated? Why aren’t you keeping us together?”

“What joy would there be in that for me?”

What do you think of undead monkeys, Captain Jack Sparrow or pirates who won’t give you back your clothes?

One lucky commenter will win a copy of Duke by Day, Rogue by Night, eBook copy for Kindle or Nook. Good luck, me hearties!

By Katherine Bone
By Katherine Bone

Here’s the link for Amazon

Here’s the link for Nook

Wow! The pinterest boards you have for research are seriously amazing, Katherine!

And I finished Duke by Day and Rogue by Night, in the early hours of this morning!

It’s fast paced with thrills and spills, wonderful love scenes. And incredible research. I loved it!

Excellent read!

You remind me of Georgette Heyer. Take a bow!

Thank you very much for being on my blog today, Katherine, and please come back soon!

Perhaps when your new book is out?

Do you guys love historicals? What’s your favourite?

Mine is The Grand Sophy by Ms Heyer. Still makes me laugh out loud!

Christine X

RUN ROSIE RUN Soundbite #9

Aaaand she’s back!

Nothing like being naughty and not getting away with it!

RUN ROSIE RUN - COMING SOON

RUN ROSIE RUN – COMING SOON

Hmm, toxic bachelor? Irritable male syndrome?

The last one sounds like H – on a good day!

It’s coming… and I’ve got a big treat for you fans of historical romantic fiction tomorrow with lots of other goodies coming before Christmas.

Christine X

RUN ROSIE RUN Soundbite #7

RUN ROSIE RUN

RUN ROSIE RUN

 

Yes, Rosie’s a bad, bad girl who knows how to kick a man where it hurts. I like that about her.

We’re re-doing the covers for Reckless Nights In Rome and A Stormy Spring to reflect the series.

These bites are going down very well!

Christine X

RUN ROSIE RUN Soundbite #5

 

COMING SOON

COMING SOON

And the edits are back! Just a few little tweaks, then reading on all the different Ereaders, then formatting, then…..

One of the things that I’ve loved about this couple is even when they’re intimate, they still manage to bicker.

To be honest I assumed because I know them so well writing about how they fall flat on their faces for each other would be straightforward. Noooooooo! Their journey to true love needed to be valid with authentic emotional conflicts, which meant digging down deep into their psyche, especially Rosie’s.

If you’ve been talking to me on facebook or twitter and I’ve not responded, we have Norovirus in this house. Thank you very much, son, who caught it during a course. H and I are not at our best, and that’s all I’ll say because the rest will be too much information.

Christine X

AUTHORS GIVING BACK by CC MacKenzie

photo

Authors Giving Back is the wonderful idea of Contemporary Romance Bestselling Author the wonderful Ruth Cardello.

The idea is that today, the 3rd of December, we give back to readers a free book. My choice is A Stormy Spring which is attracting many fans and followers across distributors.

Think Flashdance meets PS I Love You

…Music was her life, choreography her only passion…

Becca had buried her heart with the love of her life…but when she spends a single night of scorching lust with a gorgeous Spaniard the lonely dancer finds there’s a price to pay…

To a man who refuses to take no for an answer…

But fans need to comment and sign up to my blog to win. And there will be THREE lucky winners. Hugo will pick the names out of a hat and I’ll post the name of the winners on Friday 7th December at 6.00pm GMT. Good Luck.

Yes, there’s always a small catch.

BUT that’s not all. Ruth’s also running a huge Pinterest competition (you don’t need to join to enter) where she has many authors participating over twelve days. I’m giving away twelve books and other authors are giving books and many more prizes. Enter as many times as you like and here’s the link: http://pinterest.com/authorsgiveback/12-days-of-author-s-giving-back/

Here’s the facebook page link too: http://www.facebook.com/authorruth.cardello/posts/471212042931038?comment_id=4918827

GOOD LUCK! COME BACK AND GIVE ME FEEDBACK ON HOW YOU GET ON!

Here’s some reader reviews.

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Should have been titled “A Steamy Spring” September 30, 2012
By Kathy
Format:Kindle Edition|Amazon Verified Purchase
CC MacKenzie can write a sex scene like no other. She even beats out JD Robb (Sorry, Nora). Hot and sensual, and well *stops to fan face* did I mention hot?Becca is an independent woman, still healing from some major scars from the past, and she wants no part of love. But after what should have been a one-night stand with the irresistable Lucas Del Garda, she is caught in his web. As she struggles to resist and Lucas woes her, in his rather heavyhanded way, the story unfolds, with several unexpected twists and turns.I enjoyed this book very much. I give it four stars only because the timeline seemed a bit off (you’ll understand why this is important when you encounter the first twist!) and there were a couple places where the characters’ moods shifted a little too quickly. But I would still very much recommend this story. It is well worth the price and the time invested in reading it. And it will leave you wanting more of CC MacKenzie’s work.

Barnes & Noble:

 FIVE STARS New Author. WOW!!! My New Fave!

Looooove the combination of uber sexy, macho man and human failings, and can relate to the struggle of a strong female to adjust to said male, lol! I can compare her writing to other fave authors, Nora Roberts, Lora Leigh, Jude Devraux, ect. Story lines that deely grab and effect the heart. You go girl! Aleady read; “Rome…Bronte & Nico’s story”, Cant wait to locate “Run, Run, Rosie” and any others.

Smashwords:

Review by: hrhsophia on Aug. 21, 2012 : star star star star star
Great book, love the men, love the women. A couple of nods to that hot book of the moment but not too many. Cannot wait to read the rest of the series.

HAIRLARIOUS

 

 

Oh Boy!

Do I have a treat for you guys!

Since I’ve been up the wall with editing Run Rosie Run, my very good and dear friend the crazy and insane, the lovely Lynn Kelley sent me a message offering to do a guest post on Fizz & Fangs. And never one to look a gift horse in the mouth I said YES!

Now, I feel I should warn you all now that Lynn is one of those special people who makes people smile just by looking at her and there’s a very good reason for that as you will see.

Take it away, Lynn!

Photo by Rilla Jaggia

Hello, Christine.

Thanks so much for inviting me to guest post today. I thought it might be fun to talk about the real life incident that sparked the idea for Curse of the Double Digits, my children’s chapter book for ages 7 to 10.

My niece was about six and her bangs were way too long to look presentable for a family event. My sister-in-law tried to trim them, but the scissors were blunt, so my brother had a light bulb moment and grabbed his electric razor. . .

To avoid a spoiler here, let’s just say the event made me wonder how a ten-year-old would react. And of course I left the parents out of the scene and had Becky, the main character, ask her best friend Jenna to do the trimming with the electric razor.

It seems everyone has a disastrous hair story, which supplied me with endless possibilities for scenes in Curse of the Double Digits. Hair problems are just one issue Becky has to deal with during a string of bad luck that begins on her magical birthday. Now that the book is published, more people have shared bad hair day stories with me.

Here are a few:

From Cindy Howland-Hodson (Hobo Annie Rambles): “I was camping with a group of friends up in Big Bear, and as we stood around in the woods listening to a campfire speaker, I leaned against a big ol’ pine tree. When I stepped away, my hair was stuck to the trunk!

“Turns out the sticky icky sap had been dripping into my long locks the whole time! It was a gooey mess! Fortunately my McGyver hubby knew enough to coat the mess with MAYONAISE, which softened and removed it! Unfortunately, I smelled like a sandwich for the rest of the weekend!”

 Hobo Annie!  You can see her hair is super duper long!

From Rhonda Hopkins: “When I was about 8, my aunt decided to trim my bangs. Not only were they nearly to the top of my scalp but they were cut at an angle. I cried and cried. Once my nieces were old enough to understand I’d tell them, “If Aunt Dell ever tries to cut your hair, run screaming and tell another adult.” One day, I heard this yelling and my oldest niece came running and jumped in my lap screaming that Aunt Dell was trying to cut her bangs. I thought I was going to bust a gut laughing so hard. Good thing my aunt has a sense of humor.

The following is more of a strange hair story than a disaster hairdo. The saying, “To each his own” definitely applies here:

From Nancy O’Connor: “My nephew, Sean, came to visit one fall. I hadn’t seen him for a while, so I was a bit surprised to see his new hair style. Although he was a quiet and polite kid, he was very proud of his red and blond spikes, which made him look like a punk Statue of Liberty! To make the long spikes nice and stiff, he used Elmer’s glue.

“When I asked him how he ever washed his hair, he patiently explained that when he took a bath, he leaned back into the water and went, ‘Crick, crick, crick, crick,’ bending the spikes back and forth until the water softened the glue enough to shampoo his hair. Then, once it was clean and dry, he started the process over again. When he started looking for a job, he had the audacity to comment on the narrow-minded employers who judged his abilities by his hair style.”

Elmer’s Glue! Who woulda thunk? I think I’ll use some the next time I try a crazy do like this one for my YouTube videos:

 

Do you have a hairlarious story you’d like to share?

 

Children’s author Lynn Kelley worked as a court reporter for 25 years while she and her husband, George, raised their four children. Her first chapter book, Curse of the Double Digits, for ages 7 to 10, debuted on October 10, 2012.

Here’s the blurb:

Becky turns 10 on the 10th day of the 10th month!

She expects it to be magical.

 The whole class is invited to her party, including Chad, the cutest boy in the fifth grade. So is Darlenie-the-Meanie.

 Becky wants to look cute for her big day, but all her plans go wrong. Really wrong. The magic of turning ten disappears before she even has a chance to blow out her birthday candles.

 Things get so bad, she refuses to go to her own party. Becky wonders if the Curse of the Double Digits will jinx her forever.

 

Lynn also coauthors the spooky, fun Monster Moon mystery series for ages 8 to 12 under the pen name BBH McChiller. The highlight of her life are days spent with her grandchildren. Most of her time involves books: either writing books, reading books, or making altered art books. She tries her best to keep her overactive imagination in check.

To buy your copy of Curse of the Double Digits:

Amazon U.S  – Paperback and eBook

Amazon UK – Paperback and eBook

Barnes & Noble – eBook $2.99

Smashwords (formats for all eReaders)

Hope you’ll visit Lynn’s WEBSITE and follow her BLOG if you don’t already.

 

Haha! Thank you very much, Lynn!

You can come back anytime!

Christine X

 

WHY MEN NEED HELP

Hello, my lovelies.

This was taken in the lovely Cheshire town of Wilmslow last week. I’m a regular visitor, usually with one or both of my daughters where we enjoy a coffee at a French cafe people watching before surfing through Benetton. We’ve shopped at the Benetton store in Wilmslow for over twenty years. And if you just happen to be passing feel free to pop in and say hello because the people who run it deserve a big gold star for customer service and buying choices. The stock is always fantastic. Awesomesauce.

Speaking of sartorial choices, a recent survey came to my attention a couple of weeks ago. Apparently, and this is true, fifty per cent of the men responding to the survey admitted to being dressed by their wife, partner or significant other. For example, ‘helping them choose which tie went with which shirt.’

Hmm. I can hear many of you sputtering over your coffee, ‘Nonsense!’ I hear you cry.

Well, I’ve got news for you. I don’t let mine out of the door unless I’ve cast a wary eye over what he’s wearing. You see mine likes to wear his ‘favourite’ shirt/jeans/cords/shoes etc., until they’re threadbare which is fine as long as I’m not with him. BUT when I go out with him, he’d better be polished, coordinated and a picture of sartorial elegance and that includes zipping up his fly.

Why is it a man can forget to zip up his fly? I remember once walking down the high street in our town and out of the corner of my eye I realised his gate was open. ‘ZIP!’ I hissed and walked in front of him so that he could do it unobtrusively. Can’t call me a passive-aggressive – I’m aggressive all the way.

Anyway, I asked my good friend Mags about this. Mags is a card carrying feminist. Did she dress her husband? I wondered.  She rolled her eyes and said, ‘Of course I do. I’ve better things to do with my time than argue with him about choices. I make it easy and don’t give him a choice. If I left it up to him he’d look like reject from Oxfam.’

‘That’s a bit harsh, isn’t it?’ I said. Her husband’s a big pussy cat and lovely.

She snorted. ‘I draw the line at matching anoraks. Those woollen hats with a pompom irritate the hell out of me too.’

Oookay. Since I’ve been giving the survey much thought (instead of editing the hard bits of Run, Rosie, Run) I reckon being married is why men can’t be bothered. Once they’ve snared won the woman of their heart’s desire, most married men care about their clothes the way they might look after bird seed: with a total lack of care and attention.

However, there is one part of Hugo’s wardrobe that certainly claims his attention. Gilets and cargo pants. He has duck down gilets, quilted, cotton, waterproof and many more and in many colour ways and the reason for that is they have plenty of pockets. It’s the pockets that do it for him. A pocket for his cell phone. A pocket for his keys. A pocket for his wallet. A pocket for loose change. A special pocket for pens. A pocket for his camera lens. A pocket for his glasses. A secret pocket for his secret cigars. (Supposed to have kicked that habit, darling.)

I blame David Beckham for the unfortunate rise in popularity of the woollen cardigan among middle-aged men who should know better. It is not a good look, guys. David is built like Adonis and as much as it pains me to tell you this. You do not.

So, guys, do you allow your wife to dress you?

Girls, do you dress your husband?

You know I adore hearing from you!

Christine

PS Reckless Nights In Rome is at varying levels in the top twenty in iTunes across many countries and sales of A Stormy Spring are rocking too. Click on the iTunes link on the top right hand corner of the blog to get your free copy of Reckless! Enjoy!