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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Saturday in the park...

I have my own personal, private park...

For one marvelous week every spring, I can look out my front window and see mountains...trees...sparkling pools of water...and a stunning blue sky. 


Every year it's different...yet it's the same place. My family has owned week 21 at Iron Blosam Lodge at Snowbird Utah since 1976, when it was first opened as a timeshare with full owner privileges. It was the first timeshare condominium offered at Snowbird, and is fully owned by timeshare owners instead of the resort. It is quite unique for that reason.

It is only one month away...and I can't wait!

Hugs,

Fran Lee

Friday, April 24, 2015

Heather Long's Untamed Wolf, Book 6 The Wolves of Willow Bend.


Wolves of Willow Bend
Untamed Wolf
Releasing April 24, 2015

Dylan Royce, Willow Bend Hunter, is a natural flirt and courted his fair share of she-wolves, but he’s never found the woman who makes his pulse race. With the new pack’s borders verging on Willow Bend territory, he’s tasked with keeping an eye on them. His job grows more challenging daily, especially since one seductive female keeps crossing the line.

Chrystal Landros knows she’s supposed to keep to her side of the Three Rivers-Willow Bend line. But she loves to explore, and Willow Bend is home to some spectacular sites. As a former Lone Wolf, she hasn’t always been certain of her welcome, but her new home in Three Rivers opens a wonderful world of unfamiliar opportunities. Too bad the wolf who makes her blood heat is tasked with keeping her away from the places she wants to visit.

While Dylan and Chrystal clash repeatedly over her border incursions, the game between them threatens to turn deadly. Tensions between Willow Bend and Three Rivers continue to rise. Could their forbidden dalliance be the spark to ignite a war? 



Untamed Wolf
Book #6 in the Wolves of Willow Bend Series


Series Reading Order:

Wolf at Law (Prequel)
Book 1: Wolf Bite
Book 2: Caged Wolf
Book 3: Wolf Claim
Wolf Next Door, featured in Under a Wolf Moon
Book 4: Rogue Wolf
Book 5: Bayou Wolf



About the Author:

Heather Long

National bestselling author, Heather Long, likes long walks in the park, science fiction, superheroes, Marines, and men who aren’t douche bags. Her books are filled with heroes and heroines tangled in romance as hot as Texas summertime. From paranormal historical westerns to contemporary military romance, Heather might switch genres, but one thing is true in all of her stories—her characters drive the books. When she’s not wrangling her menagerie of animals, she devotes her time to family and friends she considers family. She believes if you like your heroes so real you could lick the grit off their chest, and your heroines so likable, you’re sure you’ve been friends with women just like them, you’ll enjoy her worlds as much as she does.

Contact Details:

Website: http://www.heatherlong.net
Email: heather@heatherlong.net
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/HeatherLongAuthor
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/HVLong

Excerpt:

Racing the wind, Dylan Royce danced over a thin shell of snow without sinking into the powder. A recent blizzard dumped three feet of fresh accumulation in twelve hours, all of it atop the ice-hardened pack beneath. Cold, crisp air flooded his lungs with his every footfall. Invigorated by the chill, he kept his mouth open to sample the breeze. The natural wonder from the weather made running his circuit a pleasure rather than a chore as he spun through the remote pack campgrounds.
Human families escaped to these campgrounds during the warmer summer months. The remote location, coupled with the bordering state park, also made it ideal for young wolves to learn to hunt, stalk and play away from day-to-day life. Winter often proved the second favorite season for families with older youths to escape and romp in the snow. With Three Rivers’ border so close, however, Mason slapped a moratorium on any vacation plans to the area for the pack.
The usually populated area remained virtually abandoned during Dylan’s tenure as Hunter guarding the border, a downside to Mason’s order. Such a critical position would typically have fallen on Owen Chase, but their Senior Hunter left for Hudson River eight weeks prior with his mate to train the pack’s young healer and to provide assistance to the Alpha.
So, while Dylan landed the miserable position, at least he got to enjoy the snow. And, in a few hours, he would get to enjoy Tawny, the sleek, svelte law student interning with Ryan Huston. Dylan pursued her for months before she finally consented to a drink.
Where he spent his weekend off hinged on the date. His wolf thrilled at the challenge. They would definitely enjoy taking a bite out of her taut ass. Still, better to burn off some of his frustrations…plus, he had all the gorgeous unbroken snow to himself. After climbing to the highest vantage, he growled his approval. Pristine powder lay in smooth waves down the hill.
Testing the ice crust, he found only soft powder. It clung to his fur and bunched between his claws. The swirling breeze carried the promise of more snow. Panting, he arched his head back and loosed a single call. Infusing power into the call to demand a response, he cut it off abruptly and listened.
Any wolves within his range would respond. Flicking his ears, he heard only the wind brushing the trees, the faint groan of branches heavily laden with winter’s kiss and the whuffs of his breathing. No scents teased his nostrils, no sounds alerted him to intruders, and all the magnificent snow lay waiting for him to play.
Tail wagging, he danced away from the edge and trotted several paces. Judging the distance to be perfect, he dashed forward, rushing on adrenaline-fueled muscles until he reached the edge and flung himself onto the slope, legs sprawling out. His trajectory and angle gave him additional speed. He flew to the base of the hill and crashed into a snowdrift.
Bounding out, he shook to free his coat of the snow and sneezed. Damn, that’s fun. He turned to make another climb and repeat the wild ride when a tangle of lemon and orchid teased his nose.
Whirling, he raised his head to catch the direction of the scent, because beneath the citrus was the musk of wolf—a wolf he’d already tossed three times in as many weeks.
Dammit, Chrystal. All at once, his plans for the evening began to disintegrate. If the Three Rivers bitch hightailed it over the line again, he’d have to track her, catch her, punish her, and drop kick her ass back to Luciana “I Have No Idea What the Hell I’m Doing” Barrows.
Tawny wouldn’t wait for him, either. Five minutes late, she’d warned, and he would be out of luck.
Snarling to himself, he trotted west slowly and caught the trace of Chrystal’s scent again. The swirling wind kept yanking it away from him like a tease, but he was a Hunter.
He would find her.
An hour of stalking and two false trails later, he’d finally narrowed her scent to a tract of land below the campgrounds near the old falls. The snow continued, fat heavy flakes crusting on his coat. His phone—like his clothes—were in his truck, parked more than a few miles away. He tried to bury his sour mood, knowing his date with Tawny slipped further and further out of reach.
Pausing in the shadow of a tree, he scanned the rocky slope where the water spilled from any icy crevice and flowed down into a sluggish moving pool. Ice shimmered around the shores, slicking the hard surfaces. Despite the wind, Chrystal’s scent grew stronger with each blast of wind skimming the pseudo valley.
With so much white on every surface, he expected to find her swiftly, but it took him some time to pick her out. She climbed the icy rock face along the edge of the waterfall.
His irritation switched to concern. What the hell is she doing?
Dressed in jeans, a sweatshirt, and a too-thin jacket, she climbed with determination, fighting for every hand and foothold as the slippery ice gave way beneath her grip. Straightening, he followed her progress and eyed the landscape in search of his best route to the top. A skittering of skin and shoe against the slick rock jerked his attention back to the curvy little pain in his ass. She’d dropped a foot from her upward progress and clung to the rock through will alone.
The little minx needed a damn keeper. Inch-by-inch, she continued her creeping ascent of the sheer shale. Between the composition of the stone and the ice, she risked serious injury to her bare hands. Even from his position, he could see the dampness soaking her jeans.
What the hell could be worth courting frostbite? With a leap, he bounded into the dip and sank into the wetter snow around the waterfall’s pool. Fording through the dense drifts, he found the path he’d been seeking and began to climb along the outer rim. Worn by the passage of many feet over the years, faint stone steps existed deep beneath the snow. In midsummer, the waterfall served as the perfect diving point. The pool below was a good twelve to fifteen feet deep, which meant high divers didn’t usually crack their skulls. Of course, the water wasn’t half-frozen or frigid in the middle of summer either.
Chrystal continued easing her way to the precipice. Ahead of her finally, Dylan scrambled onto the ledge and leaned over to judge the distance between them. He’d need to shift to grab her. She was beyond his neck range, even if he were able to snag her damp jacket. If she ascended another foot or two…only she didn’t. She stopped.
Dylan stared, disbelief sinking into his bones. Instead of climbing—or even holding on with her flimsy grips—she slid her free hand into her jacket and pulled out a cell phone. She stretched the phone away from her, angling toward the plunging water…why?
Forgetting the idiocy of her actions, he rushed his shift. Fur slid away, muscle twisted and bones snapped. Part of Hunter apprenticeship required shifting under high-stress situations. His mentor’s lesson had been brutal on the point. They needed to be able to change on the fly and, since they were at their most vulnerable mid-shift, hurrying the process was the only alternative.
Bliss and agony intertwined until he suddenly knelt in the icy snow with his palms flat against the chilly surface. The cold assaulted his overheated and sensitized skin like so many needling daggers plunging into his flesh. Fuck me. Blowing out a frosty breath, he did his best to ignore the wind shivering his balls and threatening to geld him.
The trembling in his muscles had more to do with the temperature than his shifting. Pushing to the edge, he found the idiot wolf with her phone angled at the spraying water, her thumb hovering over a button.
What. The. Hell?
He opened his mouth to snarl at her, but she hadn’t glanced toward him once and her scent hadn’t changed. Focused on whatever the hell her goal was, she failed to notice his position or the precariousness of her own. If he snapped at her…he clamped his teeth together, molars grinding, and waited.
Hating himself—and her more—he flattened to the snow. Working to ignore the way his dick threatened to fall off, he stretched out an arm. He could reach her. The snow blew sideways and a faint flicker of sunlight broke through the cloud cover. The light hit the water as his fingers brushed the back of her jacket.
“Yes!” she whooped. Her thumb slapped against the shutter control, snapping several shots in a row. The thin tendril of sunlight lit the water, dancing off the frost and ice around it, to shatter into prisms. Dylan might have even enjoyed the sight, save for Chrystal’s enthusiasm as she leaned further away. One moment, she dangled precariously. The next, she slid.
Even a wolf would take a beating on the rocks below.
Fisting her jacket, he ignored the scream in his bicep from lifting her falling deadweight and hauled her upward. Yes. I have her. Her howl of surprise gave him a measure of satisfaction. So did jerking her over the edge then tossing her sweet ass into the snow. She came up spluttering as Dylan rose above her and scowled.
“What the fuck are you doing Chrystal?”


Thursday, April 23, 2015

Yes, I'm Still Here


Even smooth roads curve
Morning rushes into night
Hear the bright silence



Had the urge to write Haiku. Decided to share.
Enjoy a wonderful weekend~

Tessie
http://www.tessiebradford.com/
amazon.com/author/tessiebradford


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Meet, Gwen Knight's Bad Boy Alphas!


Even bad boys need a little love…
Blurb
She is his one desire… 
Werewolf Skylar Callahan turned her back on everything she held dear in search of a career. Now a public advocate for her own kind, her political ambitions have shot her straight to the top. But amidst the glitz and glamor lurks a dark presence, one who is obsessed with claiming Skylar as his own. To survive, she must rely on Wyatt Turner—a sexy, albeit lethal, alpha who insists everything be done his way.
He is the only one who can love her… 
Wyatt is always looking to stir up trouble, and Skylar is trouble with a capital T. Not only has his wolf chosen her as his intended mate, but she also comes with her very own stalker. Consumed by his need to protect her, Wyatt doesn't care that she’s determined to keep him at arm’s length. It’s his job to keep her safe, which means getting close to the stubborn she-wolf…just the way he wants it.
Excerpt:
For the first time since they’d met that night, she had the height advantage. Lording it over him, she pressed forward until the two were near touching. “I’ll remind you again that you are not my alpha.”
Deep and dark, his growl lifted the hairs on the back of her neck.
“And that this is my house, Wyatt.” The height advantage bolstered her courage. She leaned forward and tapped him on the nose, swallowing at the sudden flash of desire in his eyes. “You can come with me if you want, but—”
She never got the rest of the invitation out. The last thing she’d expected was for the man to pin her against the wall and knock her shoes off with a soul-searing kiss.
Stunned, Sky’s mouth fell open, and Wyatt took full advantage. She sucked in a breath the moment his tongue caressed hers, the hard press of his lips curling her toes. Magic slammed into her as he plundered her mouth. Goodness, the man could kiss. Strong arms curved around her waist and braced her against the wall as he deepened the angle.
Mate…her wolf gave a long, earthy howl, pacing anxiously as the magic swelled between them. Sky melted into his embrace, stricken by the strength of the connection between them. No matter how much she loathed the man, her wolf had an entirely different opinion.
Wyatt broke from the kiss and stared down at her, annoyance tapering his gaze as he snarled, “Shit.”
Shit, indeed.
Review
Bam! Gwen Knight slam dunks with her third book! After my extreme enjoyment of her first two books, I've followed this author's career closely, and I'm happy to report that this latest offering is the best yet.
Wyatt and Sky are dynamic characters with clashing personalities - yet they make it work, and without changing who they are or what they stand for. Bad boys can love, too! And they can still be “bad boys”. The art with which Ms. Knight accomplishes this is just awesome.
Book Links
About Gwen
Gwen started writing at a young age when the monsters became interesting rather than scary. From werewolves and vampires to elves and magical realms, she enjoys writing in all genres, so long as a little love can be sprinkled in. Gwen lives in Northern British Columbia with her husband, cat, and two collies who love to play in the snow.
Contact

Monday, April 13, 2015

Does your research devour you? The Thing That Never Dies rises again! By Cerise!

Research is always that little, idly-bitty project you do that becomes The Thing That Would Not Die...or (as hubby calls it), the Hanging of the Draperies, or The Tidbit That Makes Your Readers Love You.

The Thing TWND is the challenge that many novice writers face when they have researched their topic until the end of time and logic.  When you know absolutely nothing about what you wish to write, The Thing comes out to play. He can then inhale you like The Alien he is, and keep you absorbed in a subject way beyond his usefulness or place in the play.

And as that famous Elizabethan once said, the play's the thing. Really....it is.

I've been known to work in company with The Thing. This is especially possible with the ease of access to the internet. Pinterest, Wikis and Word Tracers, maps and historical sites of all kinds beckon and beguile. A girl could develop a cold.

Capturing all that good stuff (or so you think in the moment) becomes yards of bookmarks on your computer screen, lots of notes and pretty pix. Oh, God. What a mess. I have to constantly warn myself, "Five minute warning! Dive! Dive! Or you disintegrate." Actually, what happens is I forget why I went in the first place. Sigh. Lost in minutiae.

The Thing TWND gives you far far more than you should ever want. For this book. And lures you like fine champagne to the basis for another novel. (Dear god, let me finish this one!) He tells you how to dress for breakfast in 1820 as opposed to 1810, what climate was like in 1868 or how the crops grew. (Do I need this? Hmm. Well, yes, actually. Might provide that smidgen of verisimilitude, you know.) He tells how to kill people without a trace. How many fought at the Battle of Waterloo, and only an estimate, sadly, of how many died both civilian and military in La Grande Guerre.

Ultimately The Thing must be wrestled to the ground (or you escape him because the dog has not peed since dawn or hubby needs his dinner—and you, by George, need a damn drink!) The Thing is what you learn to do to find specific information. You read like a undergraduate fool for love about your general subject matter and then you go find the specifics.

Specifics may include:

               an interview of an expert. (Do visit him so you can leave when you want. Do not take a friend with a similar project. Do take a tape recorder and notes. Do list him in your Acknowledgements.)
               a visit to the library. (Do take coins in case you have to make photocopies. Do not copy the Encyclopedia. Reserve the books you need ahead of your visit.)
a visit to a specialist museum. (Do work with the subject matter librarian or archivist. Do tell him what you want and why. Be specific. Saves him time and you heartache. Take your camera.)
               visit to the country or locale where you have set your novel. (Do research before going. Plan day trips which are less expensive than formal tours. Talk to the museum directors, etc. even if by email before hand. And yes, do ENJOY every minute of this one! Take Significant Other, too.)
      Afterward the temptation to Hang the Draperies may afflict you. This is a disease. Treat it as such. This comes upon you when you are so marvelously imbued with delights about your infusion of Knowledge that you are certain no one else knows and, by Jove, they should. 
       
      You become a missionary, a barn-burner, in short, a royal pain. This condition occurs in the virulent onset of the disease. Fortunately as you recognize that your various audiences are Bored To Tears, you back off. (Or they no longer do lunch with you, talk on phone, invite you to speak to their group.)
       
Sign posts in the town of Varennes near the Argonne
where lie 17,000 American Doughboys and nurses
who died in World War One.
      But you are still so tempted to write all that stuff into your novel that your tight little 50K mystery becomes the War and Peace of the Kill-Em genre. How to cut the Draperies? A fine editor will quickly tell you if you are pumping her full of extraneous junk.  Hire one. For your genre. Hire her by  mid-book if you suspect you are hanging too many draperies per chapter. It will be the best money you ever spent.
       
      

The church on the opposite corner wherein Louis XVI and his wife and children
took refuge when they fled the mob in the Paris Terror.

Finally, after years of OD-ing on all these delightful yummy kernels of truth, you realize that to use all you know, realistically, might never occur. Or needs to. That the little tickle that readers get from your books may often have to do with one bright pop of fact. One solid hunk of meat that you threw them in the midst of building character, tension, plot twist or viable denouement.
      So here with my pix of my most recent Paris trip, I give you a few kernels from some of my travels (which I lovingly call research, baby, for the IRS, too, donchaknow.)
       
      Here's one for you: The town of Varennes in eastern France is a peaceful place where American Doughboys walked through on their way to the Argonne. They passed the church where Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette and their two children had fled for sanctuary against the Terror. The townspeople discovered them there, told the revolutionaries who came and carted them back to Paris. There they killed all of them. A plaque stands there to commemorate the sad event. We ate across the street and those there were thrilled to have Americans who took the time and energy to visit and learn about their town. (The lunch was divine, too.)

The plaque outside the church.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Dena Garson "Your Wild Heart" Black Hills Wolves book 14



Your Wild Heart (part of the Black Hills Wolves series)
By Dena Garson

Blurb:
Wildlife biologist, Isabelle Acker, meets sexy park ranger, Wyatt Powell. His Wolf sits up and takes notice of her, but when he learns why she came to the park, he becomes wary of her intentions. After all, as far as the general population knows, there are no wolves in the Black Hills.

Ordered by his Alpha to keep an eye on the smoking-hot biologist, Wyatt finds it difficult to keep his hands to himself. He wants to possess her, to share everything about his life, but that might endanger the Tao Pack. But the attraction proves too great and, unable to deny his Wolf, he takes her with a passion he didn’t know he possessed.

However, their sexual bliss is short-lived, and on the night of the full moon, more than one secret is revealed. When all is said and done, they must each decide—is what they have between them true love or just hot sex?


YouTube book trailer:  http://youtu.be/jnHJqD0Y1kg

Check out the entire Black Hills Wolves Series on Facebook at:  https://www.facebook/BlackHillsWolvesSeries/


Excerpt:

From the shadows of the surrounding foliage, Wyatt Powell watched the slip of a woman move about her campsite with ease. The business card she had left with the girls at the ranger office read, Dr. Isabelle Acker, Wildlife Biologist. It seemed, she was used to camping outdoors.
But even if she had been camping for over five years, it was damn foolish of her to be out here alone.
Normally, he wouldn’t have paid much attention, but when he’d overheard the girls saying she was well known for her study of wolves, he’d been compelled to investigate.
Everyone knew there were no wolves in the Black Hills.
For generations, his pack had cultivated that belief. And in truth, there were no wolves. At least not what one would call a “normal” wolf. Wolf shifters were a whole other matter.
So, what brought Dr. Acker here?
She’d set up her camp in a secluded spot, well away from the established sites. Perhaps she wanted privacy. But for what?
The longer he watched, the more fascinated he became by her. It wasn’t because she seemed at ease in the outdoors. Nor was it just a physical attraction. Sure, she was pretty for a human but not in a remarkable way. She was an average height with an athlete’s build. Her plain brown hair had been pulled into a simple ponytail, but it did glitter a bit when she stepped into patches of sunlight.
Yet something about her had captured his interest. Both man and beast wanted to learn more.
He was about to retreat into the woods when he saw her gather a towel and a few bathing items and head to the nearby stream. His conscience argued he should leave and allow her some privacy, but the bulge behind his zipper insisted on following her. Part of him wanted to know how much of a nature lover she was.
Like a deer, she picked her way over the rocks until she found a spot next to the river. Before sitting, she slowly turned her head in both directions scanning the area.
Wyatt had been taught by his Sioux grandfather the value of patience when tracking prey. Or a foe. Despite his base attraction, he had yet to determine which she might be.



GIVEAWAY:
I’m celebrating the release of Your Wild Heart by giving away stuff! Between April 10-13 you can get into the drawings by following this link to Rafflecopter:



AUTHOR INFO:

Dena Garson is a Process Redesign Specialist by day and a writer and jewelry designer by night. She is raising two rowdy boys who play lots of sports which forces her to spend way too much time on the practice field and/or sidelines. Thankfully she has a loyal and loving Labrador Retriever to listen when she complains and a spoiled cat who reminds her daily she is merely a servant.