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Friday, April 20, 2018

Loving My Bone Frogs

Launching May 1
By Sharon Hamilton

I've gotten a lot of feedback that readers love older guys (silver-haired guys, guys not in their 20's). And the girls that are not Barbie Dolls.

When I first started out writing my SEAL Brotherhood Series some 7 years ago, I used to write a novella, and then follow it up with a full length novel later on. It helped to flesh out the couple beforehand, and then have them progress in a later book. I really got the chemistry right that way.

I took a detour for several years, starting new series in my larger SEAL Brotherhood Series, creating the Band of Bachelors, Bad Boys of SEAL Team 3, and Nashville SEAL, Fredo Series and the True Navy Blue series. This way I got to incorporate all the other secondary characters. But all my books are mostly on SEAL Team 3, active duty guys.

This is the first time I've written an older SEAL who wants to re-join his comrades. And this actually happens on SEAL Teams, too. I spent part of my Monday with my buddy Mike, who owns a tattoo parlour in San Diego, down the range from Coronado, and who ran 10 years with the Teams in Vietnam, then did a stint with bikers and followed that up with another 10 years as a SEAL all over again.

My character in the May 1 release has followed a similar path, without the bikers in the middle. I explored his character and the chemistry with him and his lady, Brandy, a plus-sized gal with long mahogany hair. Just so happens Tucker loves big-busted and big booty. Brandy has never had a serious relationship. Tucker, plain and simple, who at first looks like Shrek to Brandy, blooms under his touch.

I love stories like that. Sort of a Beauty and the Beast, except Belle is a plus-sized gal, and the Beast stays big and doesn't morph into a handsome prince. He always was the handsome prince.

Order Here
I wrote New Year's SEAL Dream in early January as a novella, introducing these two people. It didn't take long before I knew I'd be loving the full book I'm launching May l: SEALed At The Altar.

We all age and worry about being vital as we age. But something else happens as we run around caring for families, taking kids to soccer practice and ballet, while we're paying bills and looking for houses, or gardening. Perhaps we get worn down a little bit? We get tired as we age. That's only natural.

But for an adrenaline-junkie male, taking a break from the Teams, can be a very difficult experience. I've talked to former SEALs who readily admit they miss the Band of Brothers backing them up, jumping out of airplanes and doing things others cannot do. My hero has stayed fit and is in peak physical condition at 39 years of age. But he's never had a family. He's been damaged by a wife who left him for another Team Guy. That happens too, on the Teams.

I was gratified by the response to my two other releases this year, both with older heroes. What about you? Do you love older, silver-haired heroes?

And what do you think of my new tattoo? Next visit to FSG on Coronado I'm going to enhance it with hearts and flowers to give her a little glam. She has to compete with the hippy frog on my other shoulder, and that's just not fair!

Team Writing

When I first set out to be an author I had an image of how that would work.  Lots of quiet work all by myself followed by working with editors/publishers. That has been true in someways, but what I hadn't understood, was the connections forged between authors in the projects I'd be lucky enough to participate in. Multi-author series, Kindle Worlds, box sets,to name a few.

It is an amazing pleasure to have the privilege of working with authors I admire and learning what each of us can contribute to a project. I've learned so much!  Yes, there's a writing cave, and yes, I spend a lot of time there, but there are a lot of us in there thanks to the magic of the Internet.

This month I released Claimed by Her Polar Bears in the Paranormal Dating Agency Kindle World. This story is a crossover from Claimed Mates, a series I am writing with Ever Coming about a group of women who were at one time full-figured models together in a model house. A few years down the line, most have left that line of work and have entered all sorts of professions. And Gerri Wilder, who owns the Paranormal Dating Agency has just the right shifters for them. We begin each book with a shared scene told from each heroine's perspective before launching into her tale. 
Jenni has a life she never dreamed possible; a great career, true friends, and a decent guy wanting to marry her. If only he was the one.

Jenni’s life is finally on track. She has gone from fosterling in questionable homes to successful full-figured model to owner of her own specialty travel agency. She’s even received her first marriage proposal. Which she will probably accept, even if she knows in her heart it’s settling. But who doesn’t settle, right? It’s not like life is a fairy tale.

Matilda cannot allow her friend to marry Harold, as nice as he is. Jenni deserves better—everything,. Matilda sets her old modeling friend up with a date from the Paranormal Dating Agency. Jenni deserves all the things a shifter can bring to the table in a relationship. No settling for her best friend. Maybe she should have let Jenni know about shifter first…

Mated polar bears Clark and Ty live in the back country above Mammoth Lakes, California in a cabin they liked to describe as authentic—most everyone else would describe it as outdated. When they seek the help of the Paranormal Dating Agency to help find their third, they make plans to have the cabin rolling into this century before their date arrives. But winter is a busy season on the mountain, and the solar panels are still in the shed. Hopefully, their date will understand—at least the bathroom is complete.

Jenni is not too sure about her dates, not when she has to fly to the middle of nowhere to meet them, and especially not when they are late. Don’t even get her started on the unfinished cabin they brought her to. Except, even with all the little things that should have her giving a polite decline, she can’t help but connect with them—their charm, their kindness, their way of giving her butterflies in her belly.

When they head out to help with an emergency, Jenni needs another glimpse of them and watches through the window only to be shocked and a whole lot of freaked out to see them turning into bears—real live polar bears, to be exact. Can Jenni see past their differences and give them a chance to win her heart?

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Mixing Genres with Adite Banerjie #Romance #Suspense #RB4U @adite

If you wish to avoid a hangover you are often advised not to mix your drinks. While intoxication is guaranteed, it is a sure-fire way of making you feel unwell while you are drinking and worse still the morning after.

When it comes to writing romance, though, you are chasing a different kind of high. One that will leave the readers intoxicated with the blossoming relationship between your characters but without the bad aftertaste. I have discovered that in romance, mixing genres actually works. The slow burn relationship build up combined with the fast paced story telling of a thriller can make for an exciting read.

Destiny’s Girl is about Maya, a feisty young woman who yearns to bring down the man who destroyed her family. When Krish, the son of her most hated enemy, proposes marriage to her, she grabs the opportunity. But destiny has something else in store for her…she falls in love with Krish. How does she reconcile her heart’s desire with her need for revenge?Do share your thoughts about mixing genres—does it give you a feel good buzz or a hangover?

Maya has only one thing on her mind: revenge. So, when she lands an invitation to the most exclusive high society party being hosted at Dev Residency, she grabs the opportunity. After all, the host of the party is none other than KD, the man who destroyed her family. 

Krish needs to find a bride and soon! A marriage arranged by his father, KD, seems imminent and that would mean throwing away the key to his freedom. One innocent tango with the enigmatic beauty, Maya, and he is hooked. Can she be the means to his freedom? Accepting his proposal of marriage will take her a step closer to her goal of revenge. Can Maya stop herself from falling in love with the enemy's son? But then, love and revenge don't mix!

*This book was previously published by Harlequin/Mills and Boon as "The Indian Tycoon's Marriage Deal". 

To read an excerpt or more, do check out Destiny’s Girl on Amazon. It’s also on Kindle Unlimited – if you are a subscriber, you can read it for free!

To find out more about Adite and her work, please visit her page: 

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

SPOTLIGHT ON Carmen Cook and Coming In Hot

Please Welcome Contemporary Romance Author Carmen Cook to Romance Books for Us!

Tell us a little about the kinds of romance you write.  
I write small town romance, set in Montana (so, of course it’s small town!) with heroines who don’t need to be saved and heroes who will move mountains to win their hearts.

How did your writing career begin?
As a young mother I started reading romance and would make up stories for secondary characters. My wonderful husband encouraged me to join RWA and give writing my own characters a try.

Are you indie, traditional or hybrid?
Currently indie.

What advice would you give new writers?
Write. Read. Write some more. And keep writing. Don’t give up when things get hard, because they will. Writers write.

Favorite snack while writing?
It depends on the time of day. But, coffee. Wine. Those count as snacks, right?

What is your superpower?
Well, I’m a mom, so… 😉

What is your spirit animal?

What color is your aura?
I have no idea!

Tell us about your latest release!
Coming In Hot is the story of Regan Sinclair who couldn’t wait to get out of her small town. But now she’s unemployed, divorced and looking for new beginnings. And, along the way, she might just find a love she’d given up on.

Here's the Back Cover Copy:
She’s at a crossroads.

Regan Sinclair swore nothing would ever bring her back to Sapphire Creek. But a failed marriage and unemployment are strong motivators. It’s time to brave the demons she left in her past. Alone.

He thought she was through with him.

Gavin McCabe rarely thinks of Regan, or the one incredible night they spent together. Not since she walked out of his life without a backwards glance. But when she walks back into his life, he sees the opportunity for answers. And maybe a second chance for love.

Neither see love coming…and it’s coming in hot.

An overwhelming attraction flares to life every time the two of them are near each other, but their heat is quickly overshadowed. Their tight knit community is facing an unknown threat and Regan seems to be in the middle of it. Can she find solid ground with Gavin before this unknown menace crushes their burgeoning relationship?

Coming up next!

Author bio
Carmen Cook fell in love with reading when her parents told her she could stay up thirty minutes past bedtime if she was reading. From then on she’s been sleep deprived with a book nearby. When her imagination started warring with the words on the page, she joined her local RWA chapter and started writing her own books.

When not behind a keyboard, Carmen chases her sons and husband around the football and soccer fields while trying to avoid the Pacific Northwest rain. She loves connecting with other authors and readers. Visit her website, to sign up for her newsletter and keep up with everything that’s happening in Carmen’s world.   

Social Media links 

Carmen will be hosting a signing at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park. There will be coffee (of course) a brief reading and Q&A time, and a ton of fun. She'd love to see you there! April 23, 7pm

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Mpre fun stuff

Can't resist posting the Guilty Secrets cover  as this hunk is doing quite well for me.  My Elusive Earl was more recently released, but I have hopes for that masterful Earl doing well too. I love the puzzled look on the heroine's face. He may be super sexy but he's definitely a mystery..

And now for some fun stuff, which your comments tell me you like. Once again, please vote for your favorite....

1. If con is the opposite of pro is Congress the opposite of progress?

2. If flying is safe, why do they call the airport the terminal? 

3. Only in this stupid world:
  --do drugstores make the sick walk all the way to the back of the store to get their prescriptions while healthy people can buy cigarettes at the front.

4. --do people order double cheeseburgers, large fries, and a diet coke.

5. --do banks leave vault doors open and then chain pens to the counter. 

6. -- do we leave cars worth thousands of dollars in the driveway and put our useless junk in the garage.

7. --do we buy hotdogs in packages of ten and buns in packages of eight. 

8. -- do we have driveup ATM machines with Braille lettering.

9.  Ever wonder why the sun lightens our hair but darkens our skin? 

10.  Ever wonder that you never see the headline 'Psychic Wins Lottery?' 

11. Why is 'abbreviated' such a long word?

12. Why is it doctors call what they do 'practice'?

Do comment and tell me your favorite....I've already picked mine. 
I'll tell you if we match......Oh yes, and you can find my books at Amazon, MuseItUp, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and all the usual places.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

So what is this thing called "yoga," anyhow? by Suz deMello (#yoga #OM)

A five-thousand year-old practice, yoga has steadily been gaining practitioners in the West since the Beatles made a now-forgotten but then much-publicized trip to India in 1968. That visit, which was to study with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, kindled interest in transcendental meditation as well as all things Eastern, including yoga.

But what is yoga? Most people think that body-bending postures, called asana, are the be-all and end-all of yoga. They look at pics of people standing on their heads in the lotus position, and figure, I'll never be able to do that, and why would I want to? and don't look further into the practice. 

But as stated, yoga has been around for five thousand years, and anything that's been around so long probably has value. So why has yoga lingered? Simple answer: yoga works.

That begs the question: works at what? Why do people do yoga? What do they get out of it? What is the purpose of yoga?

Quite simply: People do yoga because it makes them happy. The result of the practice is a calm mind integrated with a healthy body...a great prescription for happiness. The word yoga means union, which refers to union of the disparate parts of ourselves--mind, body and spirit. It also refers to union with the universal all.

Yoga sees each of us as an energetic being in a universe likewise composed of energy. This view is in keeping with modern physics, which posits that everything is energy, but that which we perceive as solid and liquid isn't moving fast enough to appear as energy. Einstein told us in E=mc(squared) that anything with mass becomes energy when accelerated to the speed of light.

Thus, everything is energy. The only difference is due to a temporary condition, i.e., speed.

The sage Patanjali, who wrote the yoga sutras two thousand or so years ago, stated in the first sutra: "The purpose of yoga is to calm the disturbances of the mind."

We calm ourselves and integrate the disparate parts of ourselves--mind, body and spirit--by utilizing techniques embodied in the Eight Limbs, or Petals, of Yoga. These are not to be confused with the Eight-fold Path of Buddhism, which is also useful; these two great streams of thought complement each other and are not in conflict.

Asana, the postures, are one of the Eight Limbs. The others can be seen in the
drawing to the right, which I created for a workshop I recently gave to a writer's group on using yoga to improve creativity.

Two of the petals are prescriptions for living: the yamas and the niyamas. These embody the usual ethical precepts that most of the world's great religions and plilosophies espouse. If a person lives ethically, s/he lacks disturbances of the mind. Our consciences don't bother us if we live rightly.

Asana and pranayama embody the physical practice. Asana are the postures, and pranayama refers to breathing to push energy through our bodies.

The four petals high on the flower are the more difficult and subtle parts of yoga. Pratyahara--going inward, which enables dharana, mental focus, and diyana, meditation.  

And all of the above lead us to samadhi, oneness, a state of OM which unites us with ourselves and all else.

Remember: yoga sees everything as energy. Samadhi refers to that oneness with all.

Practicing all eight limbs of yoga with consistency, focus and determination will engender samadhi. 

I am a believer in the lifelong practice of yoga, so much so that I have spent thousands of dollars and a considerable amount of time not only to practice consistently, but to complete yoga teacher training. I look forward to spreading the word about this wonderful practice in any way I can.  Others I know who are more casual practitioners report weight loss and a generalized feeling of serenity and happiness. Many report that stretching has resulted in another inch of two of height. One man I know swears that his improvement in vision is due to yoga.

Please contact me if you want to know more. Can't hurt to try, right? 

And by the way--you don't need to stand on your head in the lotus or any other position. We do plenty of sitting and lying around, just...being.

Next month I'll blog about yoga to enhance creativity and mental function,
So stay tuned!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Has Reading Blogs Lost Its Appeal? by Marianne Stephen

Blogs. They're everywhere and everyone is trying to find a "new angle" to gain your attention.

But what if you have a blog and no one comes...or comments? Does that mean you should give up? Try a new approach? Do more promo to gain interest?

Here at RB4U, we try to post a different blog each day. Should we do more interviews? We already offer guest blog spots. Should we have more blog contests?

Have blogs become too numerous? We try to stick to romance/writing material, and sometimes some personal thoughts. What makes you decide to read this blog as opposed to thousands of other ones? How can we entice you to keep coming back and reading new blogs here?

I try to catch a reader's attention by making the title "catchy".
So...what else can be done to gain readers? Suggestions?

Photos: Flickr: alamodestuff, Kristina B., Sean MacEntee's photostreams.

Friday, April 13, 2018

#GuestBLog w/ Love and Turmoil by @Luanna_Stewart @WildRosePress #recipe #historicalromance

Now that we’re into April and the days are turning balmy (the temperature will be +4 degrees Celsius today so I know I’m pushing the whole balmy thing but it’s been a heck of a winter) my menu planning is changing. I’ll put away recipes for all the hearty comfort foods that sustained us through the seemingly never-ending Nor’easter storms and start dreaming of fresh salads, tender juicy things on the grill, and fruity desserts. And since dessert is the most important part of any meal I want to share a delicious, simple cake recipe with you so you’ll feel better about the end of winter, too. Or maybe you live in one of the southern US states and your winter has been gone for weeks and you’re already scampering around in shorts and halter tops. In which case I might have to hate you just a little bit.  Or maybe you’re in the southern hemisphere and are looking forward to cosy evenings filled with hot toddies and bread pudding. (Ooh, maybe it’s not too late for more comfort foods.)

Here in Nova Scotia, we’re many months away from enjoying local berries. And, I’m sorry, but the things called strawberries available in the supermarket this time of year should be ashamed to call themselves strawberries. Having been raised on wild blueberries (my mum’s childhood home has a blueberry field in the backyard) I’m not a fan of cultivated blueberries. Now, we do have an abundance of locally grown apples, but in my head, apple desserts are more of an autumn/winter thing. Call me silly if you like.

So where does that leave us for fruity desserts in April? Citrus. Not locally grown (though with climate change that could happen) but abundant and relatively inexpensive. Also prevents scurvy. I came across this recipe a month ago and have baked this cake three times. So far. I took it to a family supper and it received rave reviews. And did I mention it’s dang simple to mix together and bake? The easy tart-sweet glaze finishes it off beautifully.

Does your eating change with the seasons? What are you looking forward to cooking in the coming months?

Lemon Cake with Lemon Glaze
Recipe by Nagi at

2/3 cup vegetable or canola oil
2 eggs
1 ½ tbsp grated lemon rind (1 large or 2 medium lemons)
¼ cup / 65 ml fresh lemon juice
1 cup/250g plain yoghurt
1 1/4 cups / 275g caster sugar (superfine sugar, granulated ok too)

2 cups/300g plain flour (all purpose flour)
4 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt

1 3/4 cup / 210 g icing sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 1/2 tbsp plain yoghurt

1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F (standard) or 160C/320F (fan/convection). Grease a 20 cm / 8” springform pan with butter.

2. Place Wet ingredients in a bowl. Whisk until combined.

3. Sprinkle over flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk until smooth few small lumps is ok.

4. Pour into pan it should be fairly thick but pourable. Bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

5. Remove metal ring and cool on rack then glaze.

1. Place ingredients in a bowl and whisk until smooth. Test down the side of the bowl to get the right thickness, using 1 tsp of yoghurt at a time to thin it out if required. Glaze should drip (slowly, because it's thick) but not be see through.

2. Place rack on a tray or baking paper.

3. Pour glaze over the middle of the cake, gently push towards the edges so it drips down the sides.

4. Let it set for 1 hour before transferring to a serving plate.

Here’s the link to the recipe on Nagi’s website so you can see a picture and read additional notes about preparation and presentation. Enjoy!


Title:  Love and Turmoil
Author:  Luanna Stewart
Genre:  historical romance
Publisher:  The Wild Rose Press

Book Blurb:

Six months after burying her wastrel husband, Lady Arabella Woodbridge has resigned herself to a lonely life in the countryside with only her two adopted nieces for company. Being a young, respectable widow is – frustrating. Then the charming and wickedly handsome Samuel Payn takes up residence in the neighboring manor house.
Retired explorer and occasional pirate Samuel Payn is on a two-fold mission – retrieve buried loot, and locate the father who abandoned his mother to a life of poverty. But a gang of murderous villains is also after the buried treasure. And someone is threatening to tear apart the lovely widow’s family.
Will Sam’s single-minded determination to uncover his true identity threaten Arabella’s happiness - and his life?
“I hope my girls haven’t been bothersome, Mr. Payn.”
“Not at all. Edwards had the brilliant idea to search out the nets. I’d not noticed the wide variety of butterflies in the garden, not until we tried to catch them.” He chuckled. “I’m afraid the insects have outwitted us.”
She laughed, gazing up into his gorgeous blue eyes, almost silver in the bright light. She breathed in his spicy scent and every part of her came alive. She fought the urge to lean into him, wrap her arms around his slender waist, and bury her face in his chest.
Glancing away to gain time to recover from the onslaught of desire, she watched her daughters play. “They appear to be losing interest in a game they can’t win.”
Mr. Payn took her hand in his. She met his gaze, his eyes darkened. “Some of us don’t give up after the first attempt or two.”
       He was not speaking of catching butterflies. He was speaking of catching her.
Buy Links:

Author Biography:

Luanna Stewart has been creating adventures for her imaginary friends since childhood. As soon as she discovered her grandmother's stash of romance novels, all plots had to lead to a happily-ever-after.
Luanna writes full time, concentrating on sexy romantic suspense, steamy paranormal romance, and spicy historical romance.
Born and raised in Nova Scotia, Luanna has recently returned to the land of her birth with her dear husband and two spoiled cats. When she's not torturing her heroes and heroines, she’s in her kitchen baking something delicious.
Under her previous pen name of Grace Hood she has two novellas published with The Wild Rose Press.
Social Media Links:


Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Today's #Interview #Guest Christine Donovan @cmdonovan #mysticrealms #RB4U

Welcome to Romance Books 4 Us, a place for all romance and all genres. We’re very happy to have you here with us today. First, tell us a little bit about yourself…

I grew up in Massachusetts in a small suburb south of Boston with my parents and four siblings. I always wanted to be a fashion buyer and envisioned my life travelling back and forth between New York, Milan and Paris. Somehow that didn’t happen. Although I did work for several years at a dance boutique and was the buyer and manager. I loved it.  My husband and I raised four sons ranging in age from 20 to 31. Busy, chaotic times in our house when they were growing up. If you have a question about any male dominated sport, I’m your gal. I began writing fifteen years ago and have never looked back.

What kind of research do you do for a novel and how extensive do you get? When it comes to research, it depends on the genre of the book about how extensive I get. When I write an historical, I have several binders with information ready on hand. Maps of London, England and street maps from the Regency Era. I have a binder on fashion alone and one on the aristocracy of England, and frequently used language, etc. For a contemporary it’s easier as it is current day. The research narrows down to location, someone’s occupation, etc. For a paranormal, I’m world building and creating some of my own research. One of my series incorporates fairies who receive their powers from crystals. I spent and still spend countless hours studying different types of crystals and learning their healing properties.

Do real life events find their way into your stories? Always. But I’m not telling where.

Do you ever mimic family members or people you know when you choose characters? Once again, always. Whenever there is a kid in my books, they always seem to do some of the funny or crazy things my boys did. My brother was talking about a recent hiking trip at the table on Easter, and we were in tears laughing. You can be sure I’m using it at some point.

Do you have a special place you like to do your writing? Such as an office, a spare room, the dining room table, your couch? When my oldest son moved out I turned his room into my office. I thought, finally my own space to create. Well, I still do most of my writing at the kitchen table or out on the deck during the nice weather.

What is your favorite method of in laptop, desktop, iPad or the old-fashioned pencil and paper?  And do you plot out your story or go with the flow of your muse? I like to write on an Alphasmart. Old school, I know, but it works for me. Very light, no internet, so no distractions because I’m a pantser and it doesn’t take much to get me off task.

When you need a break or some time off from the trials of being a writer, what can you be found doing? I work two days a week at an optometrist’s office. I do that so I leave the house once in a while. Otherwise I read, paint and love DIY projects. I spend as much time as I can at our family beach house on Cape Cod.

Share your favorites:
Favorite color – Blue
Favorite dessert/snack – Ice cream
Favorite Season – Autumn
Favorite Romantic movie – Dirty Dancing
Favorite way to relax – Walk on the beach

What is your ideal romantic vacation? I’ve never been, but I believe Hawaii would be romantic. (hint to hubby)

Where can our readers find you?  


Is there an upcoming or current release you would like to share with us today and where can we find it?

Part of the MYSTIC REALMS boxed set

Troy, one of the first werewolves ever created, amassed many enemies during his time on earth. Although he’s dead, his adversaries still seek their revenge by hunting his surviving descendants. 
Unbeknownst to her, Kate Stewart is a direct descendent of Troy’s. She is attacked one night by a wolf who converses mind-to-mind with her. Another wolf comes to her rescue. This encounter throws her into a world where ordinary people mix with preternatural beings.
Ethan Brown, leader of the Saviors of the Night Clan is visited by Troy during sleep and given the task of keeping Kate safe and initiating her into his world. He’s also shocked to learn Kate is his mate. The assignment given him won’t be easy as Kate lives in a world where only humans exist. Or at least she thinks only humans exist.
Can the physical and emotional connection between Ethan and Kate be enough for her to accept her future and allow Ethan to change her and turn her into one of the creatures she fears most.

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