Tuesday, October 17, 2017

#NewRelease: Falling For You Anthology

It's release week for Falling for You, and I/ so excited to share this particular collection with you readers! This anthology has had a few ups and downs - we authors (all from Harlequin's Superromance line) had envisioned it as a kind of spotlight we could shine on our line...and then news that Superromance would close next year came. That could have stopped this particular anthology in its tracks, but we all dug in and decided to shine the spotlight, anyway. Because Superromances are near and dear to our hears - so this anthology is a celebration of Superromance, of our series within the line, and hopefully a warm hug to our readers.

You know what else I love about it? The fall theme -- although I love all the seasons, fall is especially....well, special. The crisp air, the falling leaves, the slow-down of time. I just love it, and setting another Slippery Rock book during this season was so much fun! Plus, the anthology includes a little something special from a rock star author -- Brenda Novak. Gah! It's just too cool. Okay, enough of my blathering...let's get to the anthology! 

Foreword by Brenda Novak.

When the weather cools down, hearts heat up…

Bonfires aren't the only things warming up the night. Across the land, hearts are falling along with the leaves. Curl up with a pumpkin spice latte and warm your heart with ten tales of autumn love.

It Was You by Tara Taylor Quinn:
He has no problem respecting the fact that she is off limits…until the one night he does.

The Right Man by Heatherly Bell:
When one long planned dream day veers wildly off-course, she must decide between the perfect wedding or the right man.

Her Hometown Cowboy by Claire McEwen:
Falling for him wasn’t part of her plan.

Meet Me in the Middle by Jo McNally:
She’s used to playing it safe, but when her old crush comes cruising back into town, she might have to risk it all.

Outsider in a Small Town by Kristina Knight:
She may hold the keys to his heart…and his future.

If I Fall by Kris Fletcher:
What goes up must fall…in love.

Finding Harmony by Janet Lee Nye:
Jericho was the last place she wanted to be, but it was becoming the best place for her.

Perfect Fit by Angel Smits:
She never forgot her first love…and though he never measured up, neither did he.

Home to You by Dana Nussio:
Can a woman who ran from home and a man who never had it ever hope to discover that home really is a place for hearts?

Can’t Help Falling in Love by Lisa Dyson:
She’s career-oriented. and he’s the one who just broke her boss’s heart.

Buy Falling for You: Amazon   B&N   iBooks   KOBO   Google Play 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The Girls We Want To Be

**This blog was originally posted on The WordWranglers**

bebe is getting to that age I've never wanted her to reach. The age when girls start to hurt one another, just because they can. You know the age I'm talking about - the this girl isn't as smart/pretty/skinny/talented/rich/funny age. I kind of feel like it's too early for this age - I mean, she's 8, not 18. Also, I kind of hoped she'd get to skip it - I mean, isn't that what we were taught during all those After School Specials, half-hour family-based sit-coms, and teen movies? That if we just began treating one another with compassion and empathy, we could stop this ridiculous cycle of wearing Girl B down simply because we're Girl A or C or J or, heck, Z?

Wasn't that what we were taught during the hours we spent watching Blossom navigate high school? Isn't that the message Brenda gave us when she told off that girl at her Beverly Hills slumber party...and then still invited her to stay, when those diet pills fell out of her bag?

Apparently, the TV and movie writers lied to us about the empathy thing because girls are still beating each other up over their differences. Or, maybe, the message we got was wrong. Maybe it isn't only that we need to treat one another with compassion and empathy (although, believe me, I think we do)...I think the message we missed is that we need to embrace and accept the things about use that are different. The things that make girls...well, girls.

Like Margaret, who decided at the end of her book that it was okay not to be Christian (like her mom)
or Jewish (like her dad). That it was okay to be her and to have questions that she can't answer quite yet....and when she did find the answer, it was an answer that was personal and specific to her, not her mother or father...not either set of grandparents. She became comfortable with who she was, outside of the expectations of her family and friends.

Margaret, who I like to believe rose from the dust of Jo March, led to other strong teenage girls and young adults...like the girls from Charmed, who didn't choose to be different, but still embraced the differences in themselves. And, you know, blew up a few demons and warlocks in the process.

In my experience, there are two camps in strong/witchy/woman TV-dom: those who land on the side of Buffy and those who land on the side of Charmed. Me? I'm a Charmed girl all the way not because of the wizarding or campy flavor, or the Buffy-lite-ness of it, but because of the journey that said women can get along, no matter what differences arise. Sure, Phoebe was jealous of Pru's power, and yes, Piper was always playing mediator, and the steady string of men in their lives was dizzying (except for Leo...Oh, my heart, Leo)...but under all of that was the sisterly bond between them. A bond that was never broken, not even when Piper tried to kill them all as the Windigo or when Phoebe's demon-spawn possessed her...or when Pru decided she'd had enough of always holding things together and let her wild side out at a biker bar.

And while they were embracing one another, they embraced the things about themselves that were different. Phoebe never lost her heart, not even when she fell in love with a demon who tried to kill them all. Pru never gave up on the strengths of her sisters, to the point that she sacrificed herself for them. Piper grew from the mediator to the protector - of her sisters, of their various charges, of her children. And when Paige came on the scene, and Billie after her, the dynamics continued to change, the sisterly bonds continued to evolve...and the women continued to embrace one another, and to explore the possibilities of sisterhood, friendship, and love.

I think they were able to embrace not only one another but themselves, because under all the demon hunting and wizard killing was that their power came from women. Pru and Piper and Phobe embraced the fact that their power, their knowledge, and their wisdom came from other women. Their mother and grandmother, and their mothers, and grandmothers, and aunts...

I think I'll find Charmed and maybe Blossom online to binge with bebe this summer. And while I'm at it, I think I'll introduce her to the actresses who played these strong girls and women - Mayim Bialik, who has an amazing new book about being a girl out, Alyssa Milano, who has become a political activist, Shannen Doherty, who is battling cancer as only a kick-ass-girl can, and Holly Marie Combs, who calls herself a 'Rebel with many Causes' on Twitter.

Because being a girl isn't just about being nice.

It's about being whoever the hell we feel like being.      

Friday, September 1, 2017

#NewRelease: Breakup in a Small Town by @AuthorKristina Knight

It's release day! It's release day! A new Slippery Rock book is in the wild, y'all, and I'm so excited about it! This book was so so so hard to write - the angst was through the roof! But, after 4 false starts, about 4 rounds of edits, and a few weeks to put some distance between Author Me and Reader Me, I'm so happy with how it turned out!

Here's a sneak peek inside the book:

Words failed him. So he tilted his head and took her mouth with his.
Her lips were warm against his, soft and yielding. He’d expected hard. Wary. The softness spurred him on. He dipped his tongue inside her mouth, tasting her. Flames of attraction replaced the uneasy feeling in his belly. Adam wrapped one arm around her slender waist and cupped her jaw with his opposite hand. She trembled, but made no move to embrace him. She didn’t draw away, though.
Adam pulled her body more firmly against his, catching his fingers in the belt loop of her jeans. A little squeak escaped her throat, then Jenny’s arms were wrapped around his neck, holding his mouth against hers. Her tongue pushed into his mouth, as if she were as hungry for him as he was for her. Her small fingers teased his nape. He wanted more.
Wanted to feel her body under him, not just against him. Wanted to watch her head fall back against the pillows in their big bed. He’d settle for a few more minutes like this, though, in the soft grass with the sun sinking into the lake behind them.
“Jenny,” he said against her mouth, and it was as if his voice broke the spell that had settled over the backyard. Jenny pulled away, putting her hands to her mouth.

“This isn’t a good idea,” she said, backing away from him.

Blurb for Breakup in a Small Town:

This isn't the man she married… 
Jenny Buchanan never considered what "for better or for worse" meant when she married Adam Buchanan at nineteen. Six years and two little boys later, "for worse" arrives in the form of a tornado that ravages Slippery Rock and injures Adam. Now he's a stranger to his family…and love won't be enough to bring him back. 

Only when Jenny asks him to move out does Adam become the husband she needs…but Adam isn't the only one who's changed. As their attraction sparks back to life, Jenny and Adam must learn what it is to grow up—and grow together—before this small-town breakup lasts forever.

Buy Breakup in a Small Town: Amazon   B&N   iBooks   Kobo   Harlequin