First, I’d like to say thank you! Thank you to everyone that has had any part in helping get the word out about To My Hero: A Blog of Our Journey Together. Whether you were part of the cover reveal, a beta reader, or just someone excited about its release, thank you for making this the best release I’ve had yet. You have made this an amazing experience. Ryan and Carly have become incredibly important to me.
Another remarkable occurrence that prompted me to write this is the discovery of the three women found alive after more than a decade of captivity in Ohio. With so much death and destruction in our world, miracles like this should be discussed and celebrated. Minutes after the Boston Marathon bombing comments were all over Twitter. That’s how I found out about the bombing, but nothing about these girls and the courage of Amanda Berry. Why?
When it comes to victims of sexual assault, we often don’t talk about it. Many girls and women who have been assaulted stay quiet. They are afraid and ashamed. It is an uncomfortable subject. And more often than not the victims are scrutinized and criticized far more than those committing the crimes.
Before I wrote To My Hero, I knew sexual assault was problematic in our society. But I had no idea until this book was completed how prevalent. I have been shocked by the amount of women who have shared with me any hint or details of their own experience. The numbers have blown me away!
One of the things I hoped to accomplish with To My Hero is to open and creating a discussion on how we can help young girls and women feel empowered after a situation has occurred. They often spend years, if not the rest of their lives dealing with the issues and consequences from a sexual assault.
Where do we start? What do you think?
People come into our lives for different reasons. Some are meant to inspire, while others are meant to teach us a lesson. It doesn’t matter if we know the reason when we meet, only that we bring out the best in each other.
Eight years ago I joined a new writer’s group. I moved a year earlier and missed the support of other writers as I hadn’t been able to attend the groups I previously belonged to. I didn’t know anyone here and just happened upon the group. One of the women read her work, and I could tell just by her accent we originated from the same place, good old Brooklyn, New York. Sometimes you just need a connection, to someone somewhere. Karen F Riley looked for those connections. She welcomed people and tried to make them feel comfortable and comforted.
Karen wrote many books, but the one that was closest to her heart was Healing in the Hurting Places, a personal tale of childhood sexual abuse and her healing journey. She wrote this book with the hope of helping others who also had their own tales of suffering. She always wanted to help when someone suffered, no matter the circumstance.
Unfortunately yesterday we lost Karen F Riley to cancer. It is so hard to imagine that she is gone. Here is a link to learn more about an amazing woman who touched so many lives. http://www.healinginthehurtingplaces.org/purchase/about
Karen and I spoke often as we had so many similar symptoms over the last 9 or 10 months, but when she told me about the inoperable tumor, I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t respond right away because I couldn’t find the words. Even in dealing with her own pain and trials, Karen offered comfort, in her words.
“I think as writers, we somehow hold ourselves to this imaginary higher standard, that somehow in times of need, we will magically be able to whip out the words that matter.
I want you to stop being concerned and realize that you have already blessed me with your presence. Your listening and being there for me in this journey, no matter how small or large a part you play, is already a tremendous comfort. I know you are dealing with your own struggles and there is no magical thing that I can come up with either, other than to try to be there for you as a friend.”
I just wanted to share with you a little bit of a woman who played a huge role in my development as a writer. She was a friend, colleague and one of the voices championing me forward, as well as my latest editor. Even in her last communication with me, the message she sent was to keep writing always.
I am happy to be part of Emma Hart’s latest Blog Tour. Wow has she been on fire! Here is her newest, her latest and greatest- Holding On
Living in London after spending almost twenty years in a town with a population of three hundred would be hard on anyone – and Alec Johnson is no exception to the rule.
When Alec followed Lexy to London, he knew his life would change drastically. He just didn’t know how much. With Lexy’s friends and admirer to contend with, he has to show there’s more to the country surfer boy than is ability to ride the waves. With his own shameless admirers, he has to keep Lexy’s trust – and despite her love for him, that’s no easy task.
Beneath her tough girl exterior, all Jennifer Mason has ever wanted to do is paint. London’s School of Art can give her that, and she couldn’t be happier she’s finally breaking free from Lilac Bay. What she’s not happy about is having to leave Carl behind – or his reluctance to visit her while she’s studying.
Their relationship is put to the test as living on her own for the first time and university take their toll on Jen. After all, three hundred miles is a long way to be away from your boyfriend when you’re eighteen years old.
And it’s even harder when you can’t keep your eyes off your best friend’s older brother.
By day, bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to a terrible two year old and growing bump, due September 2013. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of juice and writes books.
She likes to write about magic, kisses and whatever else she can fit into the story. Sarcastic, witty characters are a must. As are hot guys. Emma is currently working too many books to even count – including Playing for Keeps, the companion novel to the bestselling The Love Game. She likes to be busy – unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to when all the ideas come to life.
She throws a grape at my head, giggling. I gasp in mock shock, and she freezes. One side of my lips curl upwards. She shakes her head and steps backwards.
“I’m sorry. I was aiming for the, errrr, television,” she hedges.
I run forward, and she squeals. I grasp her round the waist, tickling her. She cries out as I pull her towards the sofa. We both fall onto it, me leaning over her.
“Stop tickling me, please,” she begs, writhing and wriggling beneath me.
“Fine.” I rest my hand against her side instead, pressing my lips to hers. She stops moving for a second. She grazes her teeth along my bottom lip, sucking it into her mouth. I growl a little deep in my throat, feeling the movement all the way down to my dick.
She fists a hand in my hair, holding me against her. Her other hand grips my back, and she loops her legs around mine. I lower my hips until they’re pressing against hers, my tongue slipping between her lips. She whimpers when my hips meet hers, her body tensing slightly under mine. I run my hand along her side, down her thigh, and back up. It creeps beneath her top, making contact with the hot skin waiting there.
I hear her intake of breath at the exact same time there’s a knock on the door.
Stalk Emma here:
Today I have the pleasure of introducing to you, another incredible book by the very talented Emma Hart. Today I bring to you The Love Game!
“Sex does not count as exercise.” She looks at me pointedly. “In any position.”
“It burns calories,” I argue. “That counts as exercise.”
She sighs and shakes her head, but I can tell she’s trying not to laugh. What? I make a damn good point.
“It’s not a recognized form of exercise, Braden.”
“You called me Bray last night. I liked it.” I scrape her hair from her face with my fingers.
“Did I? When?”
“You, um.. You had a nightmare, and I woke you. Then.”
“Oh.” She puts the muffin down. “Sorry.”
“Hey.” I make her look at me. “Don’t be sorry. Do you have them often?”
Her eyes move from my face, looking out at the crystal clear water in front of us. “Sometimes. Less than I used to.”
“Why do you get them? I mean, what do you dream about?”
The silence is telling. I know what she’s going to say before she even says it.
“The day my Mom died.”
“Maddie, we don’t have to talk about this-”
“Talking helps, sometimes. I’ve just never had anyone to really talk to.”
I take her hand, slipping my fingers through hers. I rub the back of her hand with my thumb. “If you want to talk about it, then we’ll talk.” I want her to talk to me about it.
She takes a deep breath, and in the silence, I wonder if she’s going to speak. But she does.
“I have the nightmares because I watched her die.”
LIke it? Want to win a copy?
If you follow me anywhere, you know I’ve been bursting with excitement over To My Hero: A Blog of Our Journey Together. Today I get to talk about it. Not just talk about it, but I get to reveal the AMAZING cover. First let me tell you a little about To My Hero. To My Hero is a NA Contemporary Romance expected to release April 21st, 2013. To My Hero is a tuff Stuff type of book that deals with the aftermath of abuse of sexual assault. Writing it was an emotional ride from beginning to end. I feel that writing this book has helped me grow as a writer, as well as a person. I knew many girls and women have had some experience with sexual assault, but I had no idea how many. For anyone who had suffered either abuse or sexual assault, I just want you to know, you’re not alone.
So more about the actual story. Here is the synopsis:
It would’ve been different if I had courage, even an ounce of it. But I was a coward from the day I met you, Ryan Crowley. I still am. In the end it doesn’t matter. The bottom line is the same. It’s my fault.
When the unthinkable happens Carly Cavanough is left beaten, betrayed, and devastated. Her best friend doesn’t understand. Her parents won’t listen. Everyone in her life turns against her. She’s completely alone, except for Ryan Crowley, the boy she’s been crushing on for years. She won’t admit to him what she can’t admit to herself. But he understands without words. He knows more about what she’s going through than she can possibly imagine and he knows what it will take for the healing to begin.
With Ryan’s help Carly begins to piece together the fragments of her once perfect life and embarks on a journey of love and healing, just long enough for the rug to be pulled out from under her again. Can she find the strength and will to pull herself together to save Ryan and herself when their lives are on the line?
So are you ready for the cover?
Are you sure?
Okay, here we GO
So what do you think? Do you like the cover? The premise? I can’t wait to hear from you!
I am so excited to present to you Cheating Death, a New Adult Paranormal book by Jen Naumann. I was lucky enough to receive an ARC of this book, and I have to tell you it was fabulous. I was riveted throughout the story. I wanted to read this from the moment Jen told me about it, and I am happy to say it did not disappoint. So without further ado, here is Cheating Death
Lysandra Brooks remembers everything about the day she almost drowned alongside her grandma, especially the set of mysterious eyes she saw at the bottom of the lake. Ever since then, she’s been seeing strange things when she is near water—things that aren’t really there. Because of it, Lysandra has the tendency to avoid anything that isn’t on dry land. On her last day of high school, however, the biggest party of the year is set to take place at a fellow senior’s lakeside mansion. Despite her fears, Lysandra decides to prove to her friends and herself that she can handle it.
But after a horrific night of drinking and drama that leaves Lysandra feeling lonely and confused, she nearly drowns for a second time, only to be saved by the new guy in town. From that moment on, Lysandra’s world is turned upside down with the discovery of mind blowing secrets, including a revelation that something sinister is after her soul.
Jen grew up during a magical time in which Ghostbusters, Star Wars, E.T. and The Goonies were the biggest blockbusters. Her love of sci-fi exploded over time, eventually growing into a career of writing YA fiction with a paranormal flair. When not sitting at her Mac, she can be found at concerts and movies, hanging with friends, chilling at her lake home, taking pictures, working on graphic design projects, traveling, or at home with her husband in southern Minnesota and trying to keep up with their four active children.
You can check out the Cheating Death Book Trailer here: http://youtu.be/n6CUk0Ljz3M
Follow the Cheating Death Blog Hop
I’m excited and honored to be part of the Entrelacen Cover Reveal by Danielle Morales. Danielle is champion of the authors she loves. Today I am proud to step aside and help shine the light on her.
In case you haven’t had the pleasure of meeting her yet, this is Dani Morales!
Dani Morales is a native Texan currently residing in Las Vegas, Nevada with her three boys and her mother. She adopted the boys in December of 2011 and loves spending every minute playing with them. On her spare time you can find a book in her hand or sitting in front of the computer typing out stories that run rampant in her mind.
What is Entrelacen about?
One girl faces tethered responsibilities in the form of three boys.
One boy dealt a hard hand but rises above in search of his destiny.
Two separate lives desperate for a break, collide.
Falling in love was never the plan but it happened anyway.
Time’s running out and both their fears comes to light.
The key to defeating darkness lies within their family lineage.
Were they thrown together by chance or fate?
Will love conquer all or will a sacrifice be made?
Okay, the moment you’ve been waiting For! The big reveal and an excerpt from Entrelacen
I immediately feel as if this is the bookstore I’ve been searching for. I push the door open at the same time someone on the inside is pulling it open. It causes me to stumble, ungracefully I might add, into the chest of a remarkably fit guy. Immediately I feel my face flush scarlet and try to step back. His strong hands are flexing on my waist to steady me. I realize that I’m shaking.
When my wits start to focus, I inhale and am assaulted by the most sensual masculine scent I have ever smelt. It is like the smell of rain mixed with laundry soap and desire. Okay. Maybe I am just smelling my own desire. I’ve never been so insanely attracted to someone without even seeing his face. That’s when I notice my hands have embedded themselves into his royal blue shirt. I let go and take a step back. His hands drop to his sides and ball into fists. He’s wearing some faded blue jeans that are just a little baggy and look perfect on him. His shirt is form fitting, and if I hadn’t already felt up his chest and stomach, I would have noticed his abs through his shirt. My gaze finally lands on his face, and all thoughts immediately vacate the area.
He has beautiful hazel eyes that could rival my own. They hold humor in their depths. His lips are absolutely perfect. I just want to kiss them to see if they were as soft as they look and run my fingers through his untamed black hair. His face looks like it has been sculpted from marble, very tan marble. His smile break whatever spell I was under, and I feel completely embarrassed. I was caught checking him out. I don’t do that. What the hell is wrong with me? Speak April. You look so stupid right now.
“I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to, umm, fall into you and, uh, mess up your shirt.”
The smile gets bigger, and his eyes shine like there’s light behind them. Electricity shoots through my body. Every molecule inside me is aware of his proximity and wants to touch and caress him.
“No, I’m sorry. I was so busy talking to Gran that I got distracted, and I wasn’t paying attention to see if someone was outside.”
His voice is a deep, seductive sound that oozes charm and confidence. This is retarded. I’m having some intense feelings for this guy that I don’t know and probably don’t have a chance in hell with.
“No harm done. Thanks for, umm, catching me?”
Where to find Dani
I have a confession. It’s nothing juicy or scandalous. Nothing to keep you salivating long after I tell you, but it is a confession nonetheless. If you have been following me on Facebook or Twitter for a while you may have noticed a drop off in my activity. Or perhaps you may remember the early fall feeds of the world spinning uncontrollably around me. Unfortunately I’m not just talking about the earth rotating around the sun. I mean my world was whooshing by like a boat getting tossed in an angry, violent storm. Even when my eyes were closed.
At first I thought it was a headache, plain and simple. I’ve suffered from migraines my whole life. But the funniness in my swimming head never went away. And everything I did made me dizzy. Everything. And then there was the fatigue. I couldn’t will myself to get to the gym. A place I spent a good many hours a week. Especially in yoga and Zumba. My two favorite classes brought me to tears and made my stomach twist and turn, I’d leave them wanting only to throw my guts up. Not to mention the effects on my head. At the time I didn’t realize the pain I had in my right eye had any connection to any of this. Nor did I realize how much my vision was affected.
At first I’d post that I wasn’t feeling well, but after a while I stopped. I never want to be the person that brings a room down. My books are heavy enough. When people asked how I was, I began to answer, “I’m great!” Not because I wanted to lie, but because I wanted to go on as normal, I wanted to be great! I didn’t mention the many doctors I was seeing or the tests I was taking. Not publicly. But I knew something was wrong. And I knew for me, it was big.
Skip ahead many months, tests, and Dr. Visits later, and that brings me to where I am now. We finally know what it is that’s been making me sick, and we know the path I now need to take. Thankfully it’s nothing terminal. But it had altered my life in many ways. Sometimes I think it’s really not that big a deal, and I’m making too much of it, but other times, depending on how others react, I wonder if it’s bigger and I’m missing it.
So the thing is, I was just diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and put on medication to help slow it down. I take an injection every other day and have infused some additional natural elements to my daily routine. I’ve not been quiet about that! One of the reasons I didn’t want this public was because I was FREAKING out about the idea of injecting myself. I HATE needles! The anticipation alone brought me to tears. So far it’s been okay (I just started this week) and my anxiety has decreased tenfold. I’m still nervous, still don’t like pain, but I will do what I must.
Why am I telling you? Something recently came out on Facebook. I’ve been getting a lot of messages and emails since. I want you to know I’m okay and I appreciate your kindness and support. It means the world to me and honestly, it’s what keeps me going. So please don’t’ stop talking or tweeting to me, or doing whatever you do to communicate with me. That would really break my heart. One of the side effects of the disease and medication is the fatigue. Sometimes I am just so tired, it’s hard for me to respond as quickly as I once did. Tuesday I didn’t think I could press a button to type. Not the case now. So if I don’t get right back to you, know that I read everything and will get back to you as soon as I can. The only other real difference you might see is that I don’t blog as often as I used to. I’m trying though to be more regular with my posts. It would help me a lot if I knew what you’d like to see, so if you have any questions or ideas, please feel free to put them forth.
Most of all, thank you. Thank you for your support and for being you!
I am so excited to be part of the Never Forget Blog Tour!
First- What’s Never Forget about?
A city girl.
A small town boy.
A summer they’ll never forget.
Spending the summer at her Grammy’s in Lilac Bay, Devon, is city girl Alexis ‘Lexy’ Edwards idea of hell. That is, until she reconnects with her childhood friend, Jen, and meets Alec Johnson.
Alec is the kind of guy Lexy knows she needs to stay away from. He’s the village flirt, ridiculously hot and very dangerous to her self control. But there’s a problem – she can’t seem to keep him out, even though she knows he’ll break her heart.
As Alec slowly strips away Lexy’s defences and the two embark on a summer romance she never wanted, their feelings grow to more than either expected. But nothing lasts forever, and reality intrudes.
As her world is shaken to it’s core, Lexy’s self made prediction comes true when she discovers she’s spent six weeks surrounded by secrets. Kept out by her family and the only guy she’s ever trusted, she falls apart.
And when Grammy tells her that ‘you might not end up where you wanted to be, but you’ll always end up where you’re meant to be,’ she has to figure out if her meant to be is back home in London, or if it’s been in Devon the whole time.
A Little About Emma Hart
By day, Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to a terrible two year old. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of wine and writes books.
She likes to write about magic, kisses and whatever else she can fit into the story. Sarcastic, witty characters are a must. As are hot guys. She has two new series planned as well as her New Adult Romance, Never Forget, due February 2013. She likes to be busy – unless busy involves doing the dishes.
Her debut YA series, The Mauve Legacy, is an Apple iBooks Bestseller – and this makes Emma excited.
EXCERPT Alec’s POV
Lexy bites her lip, making a soft white indent on the pinkness, and watches Bing leave the room. I put my thumb on her lip and gently tease it from between her teeth.
“Please don’t bite your lip,” I whisper, aware of the husky tone my voice has taken on. Fuck.
“Because… Ah.” I close my eyes. “When you do it, it’s goddamn sexy, Princess.”
“What, so don’t do this?”
I open my eyes again and she’s biting her lip, her eyes wide and innocent.
“Yep,” I say, all the blood in my body rushing straight down to my dick. I stand up straight. Like that would hide it. “Definitely don’t do that.”
She raises those perfectly shaped eyebrows. “Okay. I won’t.”
She turns away from me slightly, looking out the window at the garden. I exhale and lean my head back. I glance at her. Her lip is caught between her teeth once again.
“Lexy,” I growl.
“Alec?” She smiles sweetly and moves back.
“What did I just say?”
“I.. I can’t remember.” She backs into the wall, her hands flat against the stone surface.
I stalk her, placing my hands either side of her head on the wall. I lean into her, moving my face close to hers.
“Don’t bite your lip like that,” I mutter in her ear.
I ghost my lips along her jaw, barely touching the smooth skin there. Her breath catches and my mouth finds hers. Her lips are hot against mine and I sweep them with my tongue, pressing my hips against her and pinning her to the wall. She whimpers deep in her throat and opens her mouth, stroking my tongue with hers. Her hands slide around my back and she grasps my shoulders, her nails digging in slightly through my top. I cup her hip and lean into her closer, all common sense gone.
“You tell ‘em, Jezza!” Vi yells. “You should have put something on the end of it!”
I stop and step back, breathing slightly heavily. I look at her. Her brown eyes are shining, her cheeks are flushed and her lips are parted in a way that makes me want to push her back against that wall and slip my tongue back through them.
My voice is quiet when I speak next, a threat and a promise of what could be, what would be if we were alone, all rolled into one. “We need to go, Princess. Now.”