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Novella collections? and more...

Novella collections?

I’m over at ChristiansRead asking questions about novella collections. Do you like reading them or do you prefer full length novels? What’s the last novella collection you bought? What’s the last novella collection you read?

    



Guest post and giveaway by Sally Bradley

Hey peeps, I’m thrilled to host Sally Bradley today! I first heard about her book, Kept, years ago when she first was writing it and thought the story premise was absolutely fascinating. It’s wonderful to see this book finally in print (and what a gorgeous cover, too!).

Here’s the back cover blurb for her book:

"Gutsy and fast-paced."—Laura Frantz, author of Love's Reckoning

"One of the most surprising and best books I’ve read this year."—MaryLu Tyndall, best-selling author of Legacy of the King's Pirates series

Life has taught Miska Tomlinson that there are no honorable men. Her womanizing brothers, her absentee father, and Mark, the married baseball player who claims to love her—all have proven undependable. But Miska has life under control. She runs her editing business from her luxury condo, stays fit with daily jogs along Chicago's lakefront, and in her free time blogs anonymously about life as a kept woman.

Enter new neighbor Dillan Foster. Between his unexpected friendship and her father's sudden reappearance, Miska loses control of her orderly life. Her relationship with Mark deteriorates, and Miska can't help comparing him to Dillan. His religious views are so foreign, yet the way he treats her is something she's longed for. But Dillan discovers exactly who she is and what she has done. Too late she finds herself longing for a man who is determined to never look her way again.
When her blog receives unexpected national press, Miska realizes that her anonymity was an illusion. Caught in a scandal about to break across the nation, Miska wonders if the God Dillan talks about would bother with a woman like her—a woman who's gone too far and done too much.

"Vibrant characters, compelling questions, modern-day issues... Kept is a contemporary Christian classic along the lines of Redeeming Love. Impossible to put down, this story pulls us into the heart of Chicago and shows us how God’s hand can work, even when we repeatedly make the wrong choices. Sally Bradley’s voice is gripping and clear, and her debut is a shining beacon of how very relevant Christian fiction can be."—Heather Day Gilbert, author of God's Daughter and Miranda Warning.

Here’s a bit about Sally:

Sally Bradley writes big-city fiction with real issues and real hope. A Chicagoan since age five, she now lives in the Kansas City area with her family. You can find her online at sallybradley.com and Sally Bradley, Writer on Facebook. Kept is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo.

And now, here’s Sally!

First, big thanks to Camy for letting me hijack her blog!

Camy’s got a lot of romance going on here, so I thought I’d follow suit. My debut novel, Kept, has just released. In fact today’s the official release day! (Woo-whoo! Ahem.) Kept is big-city fiction set in gorgeous downtown Chicago—right on the lakefront beside Grant and Millennium Park and Buckingham Fountain and the Art Institute... don’t you just want to go?

I sure do.

Miska Tomlinson, my heroine, is an exotic beauty who’s fallen for the line so many young women in America are falling for—that sex is meaningless, that love doesn’t last, that relationships are only for a time. They’ve been thrown away so many times—and have thrown men away too.

Eventually all that hurt catches up to a girl.

That’s where the book begins for Miska—just as a guy like none she’s ever met moves in next door. There are lots of ups and downs throughout their journey, lots of pain and drama, but lots of fun and flirtation too. So I thought I’d share the flirting part here. This section always makes me smile.

[Important details to catch you up—Dillan is, as Miska first labeled him, freakishly tall. He’s six nine. No, that’s not random. There’s a reason he’s so tall. And they’re playing Frisbee soccer with a bunch of other singles. Enjoy!]

They jogged farther down the field. Dillan’s team kept the Frisbee near her goal, and she and Dillan stopped to catch their breath. Behind the trees on the far side of the park, the sky turned pink and lavender. She squinted at the occasional ray of light that jumped between swaying leaves and tried to blind her.

Somewhere someone was grilling. “Smell that?”

Dillan sniffed the air.

“What is that? Ribs? Steak?”

He pointed behind them. “It’s coming from over there.”

She looked but couldn’t find the source. When she turned back, Dillan was yards ahead of her, sprinting for the Frisbee heading their way.

“Dillan!” She chased him.

The Frisbee stayed up, and Dillan leaped high into the air, nabbing the edge and pulling it into his palm. He landed hard on his feet, almost falling to his knees as she skidded to a stop. He flung his arm out for balance.

Two of his teammates stood alone by her team’s goal. Once he stood—

Miska leaped onto his back.

He laughed beneath her. “Uh, foul.”

She wrapped her arms around his neck, her legs around his waist. “Drop the Frisbee and no one gets hurt.”

People began to laugh and cheer. Someone wolf-whistled.

“Miska.” Dillan coughed. Laughed. “Get off.” He twisted, his left arm coming back to his chest to fling the Frisbee.

Miska lunged over his shoulder for it.

He laughed again, straightening. “Are you serious?”

She slipped. With a yelp, she tightened her hold around his neck, one hand grabbing a fistful of shirt.

He stumbled back a step.

Safely on his back again, she made another grab for the Frisbee.

“Please.” Amusement tinged his voice. He held the Frisbee out, way beyond her reach.

“No fair. Your arms are like six feet long.”

“And you climbing on my back is fair.” He brought the Frisbee in close, let her reach for it, and held it out again. Pulled it close, let her reach for it, held it out again. And again.

Across the field laughter grew. Jordan flopped onto the grass, an arm across her stomach, while Garrett watched with his hands on his hips. “Let me have it, Dillan. You’re making a scene.”

“So?”

“So I can live with this. Can you?”

“Watch me,” he said and started to run.

She jerked backwards. Her mouth flew open, and she grabbed his shoulders. “Dillan!”

His long legs ate up the distance. Miska hung on, each fist clenching the front of his shirt, each step jouncing her up and down. She pressed her cheek against the side of his head, his hair cushioning her jaw. They passed everyone until only one man stood between them and the goal.

Dillan leaned over the shorter guy’s head and tossed the Frisbee in.

His team erupted.

Miska slid off his back and landed in a heap on the ground. Dillan high-fived Cam, then turned to her, a grin across his face. He offered her a hand up.

She swatted it away. “You cheated.”

“Oh, I’m sorry. What was I thinking?”

On her feet, she flipped her hair over her shoulder. “You weren’t, I’m sure. There’s not enough oxygen up there. How are you even alive?”

Laughing, Cam shook his head and jogged downfield.

Dillan pointed toward his ear, his chest heaving beneath his crumpled Cubs T-shirt. “You’ve got grass in your hair.”

She ran her fingers over her curls. “Did I get it?”

“No, it’s still—” He brought his hand closer. “You’re right below it.”

She shook her head, moved her hand up. “Here?”

“Let me.”

Her hair gave beneath his fingers, a curl separating his skin from hers. And then his fingers were in front of her, a blade of grass—brown and jagged at one end—in his hand. He tossed it to the ground. “There.”

“Any more?”

“Don’t think so.” He checked both sides of her head. “You’re good.” He took a step toward the center of the field, and Miska fell in beside him, seeing the Frisbee take off at the other end.

Cam said something to a guy who glanced over his shoulder at her and Dillan.

“Why does everyone keep looking at us?”

“What do you mean?”

“While we were eating and just now. Every time I look up, guys are watching us.”

He shrugged. “Got me.” He eased into a jog and began to leave her behind.

“What are you doing?”

“Playing defense.” He smirked over his shoulder. “I’ll explain it to you some time.”

Camy here: Great excerpt! Thanks Sally!

Sally’s also giving away one ebook copy of her book, Kept!

To enter the contest:

You must join Sally’s email newsletter to be eligible for this contest (go to Sally’s website and look for the form on the right side to sign up for her newsletter). Fill out the form below. Be sure to read the rules.

    


SUSHI FOR ONE: deleted scene chapter 24

I found another deleted scene from Sushi for One tucked away in the depths of my computer. This one was a short scene originally inserted at the beginning of Chapter 24, but it got axed since I was over word limit, and my editor pointed out it didn’t do much for the storyline.

For those of you who haven’t read Sushi for One, don’t worry, this won’t ruin the book for you. For those of you who have read it, you’ll hopefully get a chuckle over some of the snarkiness that got cut from the original book.

I’m also giving away the last of my author copies of Sushi for One over at Goodreads! Click here to enter (you must belong to Goodreads to enter). Ends September 20th.

They got her into the apartment, and Venus went to collect the Igloo ice machine and the CPM machine. She set the CPM on the bed.

“The bed’s too short.”

“What do you mean?”

“When you lie down, I have to move the machine here to fit under your leg.”

“Yeah?”

“Well, the edge of the machine is hanging over the end of the bed.”

Lex peered down. “That’s just great.”

“I’ll have to move it onto the bed.”

“But I’ll bang my head against the wall.”

“Would you rather have the machine drop to the floor? With your leg attached?”

“Good point.”

Venus started lugging boxes to the foot of Lex’s bed. “Alan said the CPM machine needs a footboard or something to hit against, because the passive motion will move it backwards.” She had to squeeze past the box once it was in place.

“How am I going to get to the bathroom?”

Venus shrugged.

“I hope I don’t have to go badly. It’ll take so long to get past the boxes—”

“Your fault for getting such a cramped studio.” Venus glared at her.

Lex glared back. “Helloooo? I’m in pain, here?”

“I’ll set up your ice machine.” Venus peered into the Igloo. “Needs more ice.”

She headed to Lex’s freezer. “No way.”

“What?”

“You don’t have an ice maker?”

“Oh. Uh . . . no.”

Venus looked around, saw Lex’s ice chest. “I’ll go get ice from Safeway. We’ll store it in that.” She picked up her purse and left.

Lex stared at the stains on the ceiling. This day was getting worse and worse.

Venus’s rattling of the door knob woke her from her doze.

“Got the ice.”

“Thanks.”

Venus stopped. “Are you actually being polite today? What a shocker.”

Lex frowned.

Venus chortled and dumped the ice into the ice machine. She hooked Lex up, and a spurt of cold crept over the surface of her knee. It numbed the throbbing pain.

“Where’s your extension cord?”

“What extension cord?”

“You don’t have one?”

“Do you see a lot of electrical appliances?”

Venus gusted out a frustrated sigh. She bent to pick up her purse. “I’ll be back.” Her snarl rumbled in the room after she slammed the door shut.

© 2014 Camy Tang
    



Regency Goodies Giveaway

To celebrate the release of my debut Regency romance, Prelude for a Lord, I’m holding a huge giveaway of books, hand-knit lace shawls, Jane Austen tea, and violin Christmas ornaments!


I’m giving away FIVE baskets. Each has (1) a bag of whole leaf Jane Austen tea from the Jane Austen Centre in Bath, England, (2) a violin ornament in honor of my fictional musicians, Lord Dommick and Lady Alethea, (3) a copy of Prelude for a Lord, and (4) a different hand-knit lace shawl (yes, knit by yours truly). I tried to use knitting patterns that Jane Austen or her contemporaries would have used, although some are more Victorian than Regency. The patterns were all from the knitting pattern book, Victorian Lace Today by Jane Sowerby.

***PLEASE NOTE: For those of you allergic to wool, all the scarves are made with some sort of animal fiber, so be warned that you might react if the scarves touch your skin.

Basket 1:
Black Mohair Diamond Scarf
Click here for the project page on Ravelry
Yarn is 70% Mohair, 30% Silk
Size: 22" x 59"
The diamond pattern was originally published in 1840 but there’s a good chance it was in common use and passed down orally before this. I am not positive if Jane Austen would have knit it, though, because it might have only been in use by knitters in their isolated locales.

Basket 2:
Sweet Peas Shetland Scarf
Click here for the project page on Ravelry
Yarn is 100% wool. The color way is called “Sweet Peas.”
Size: 69" x 21"
This pattern was first printed in 1842, but it is possible it was passed down orally long before this, perhaps by the Shetlanders in Scotland, since the pattern was first printed as a “Shetland pattern” for a shawl.

Basket 3:

Moss Melon Scarf
Click here for the project page on Ravelry
Yarn is 100% Alpaca. The color way is called “Moss.”
Size: 65" x 18"
The “Melon” refers to the center knitting pattern, which is a really pretty and easy pattern. It’s a Victorian pattern, not a Regency one, but I couldn’t resist because it was so beautiful. It was originally published in Weldon’s Practical Knitter in 1890.

Basket 4:
Raisin Scarf
Click here for the project page on Ravelry
Yarn is 70% Merino wool, 30% Silk. The color way is called “Raisin,” and it’s hard to see in the pictures, but it’s an absolutely beautiful dark purple-brown color with deep glossy notes.
Size: 58" x 12"
The pattern is the same as the Black Mohair shawl above, but with a different yarn and color way, it looks very different.

Basket 5:
Rose Garden Scarf
Click here for the project page on Ravelry
Yarn is 100% wool. The color way is “Rose Garden.”
Size: 60" x 16"
This is one of the simplest and possibly one of the oldest scarf patterns among those published, and I am almost positive Jane Austen would have knit a lace scarf like this. Well, if she knit lace scarves. Although I doubt she ever used yarn in a color way like this. :) While the pattern was first published in 1837, it was probably in use and passed down orally long before this. The center is called a faggoting pattern, and it’s both ridiculously easy and very airy and lacy.

To enter:

You must join my Camille Elliot email newsletter to be eligible for this contest (go to CamilleElliot.com and sign up using the form on the right side of the page. Then fill out the entry form below. Be sure to read the rules.

Extra Twitter entries: Get one extra entry per day if you tweet about this giveaway:
PRELUDE FOR A LORD Regency book & goodies giveaway! http://is.gd/7ajcBg @AuthorCamilleE
(Be sure to include @AuthorCamilleE so I can see your tweet and give you your extra entry.)

Extra Facebook entries: Get one extra entry per day if you share this Facebook post on your own Facebook profile and/or page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCamilleElliot/photos/p.510510819083100/510510819083100/?type=1
(Be sure you share the post at the link above--go to the link and then click "share". Make sure you set the privacy of your share to “public” so I can see that you shared it and give you your extra entry even if I’m not on your friends list.)

And please “like” my Camille Elliot Facebook page, while you’re there. :)

    


Review: Evernight


Evernight
Evernight by Kristen Callihan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



This is my first book by this author and I was really impressed with the complexity of the story world. In a way, it reminded me of contemporary urban paranormal romance like Sherrilyn Kenyon, but steampunk, which for me was not a bad thing at all.

The hero, Will, was totally hot and very sympathetic. He had a great backstory that made me like him right away.

The secondary characters were numerous but interesting, and their subplot threads wove neatly into the main storyline. The plot also had a lot of twists that kept me guessing.

My only problem with this book is that the heroine didn't really resonate with me. I'm not sure exactly why, and it might just be me. My recommendation would be to try this book out yourself to see how you like the heroine.

There's a lot of very hot sex which is a little more graphic than, say, a Harlequin Blaze. It didn't bother me, but I thought I ought to mention that for any reader who might want to know.

Overall, an entertaining steampunk novel.



View all my reviews

    



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