Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Augustina Van Hoven and her Latest Novel

Augustina Van Hoven was born in The Netherlands and currently resides in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, a dog and two cats. She is an avid reader of romance, science fiction and fantasy. When she’s not writing she likes to work in her garden or, in the winter months, crochet and knit on her knitting machines.

Character Interview

Beverley: What’s your name?

Karl: Karl Hansen

Beverley: Where did you grow up?

Karl: I was born and raised in Baltimore.

Beverley: During what time period does your story take place?

Karl: This story takes place in the spring of 2013.

Beverley: What’s your story/back story?

Karl: I have a master’s degree in chemistry from the University of Maryland. I’ve been working for the several years for the drug cartels until my last job started going south. Now I’m working as a barista in a small Oregon town until it’s safe to find another chemistry job.

Beverley: Why would someone come up with a story about you?

Karl: Well, I end up stumbling upon the greatest secret of human history. We are not the only sentient species on this earth.

Beverley: What’s your goal in this story?

Karl: I’m trying to find the woman I met in the park, only she isn’t human.

Beverley: What conflicts are you facing?

Karl: I’m still on the lam from my last employer and now I’m trying to infiltrate a hidden community of supernatural creatures.

Beverley: Do you have a plan for resolving them?

Karl: I haven’t a clue. I’m making this up as I go along.

Beverley: Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

Karl: I love Avalyn and I’ll do anything to find her.

Blurb for The Discovery

Humans aren’t safe in Avalyn’s paranormal world, but to one man, that doesn’t matter…

Karl Hansen’s greatest skill—besides his ability to develop illegal concoctions—is his instinct for survival. When Karl’s position as head chemist in a drug cartel looks like it might turn deadly, he goes on the lam. Karl’s working as a barista in a small Oregon town—legal concoctions this time—when he meets Avalyn. He’s felled by her, fairy wings and all. She vanishes into the mist, and he’ll brave any danger to find her.

Saving fellow refugees from the hidden magical world is all that matters to Avalyn of the water Fae. She is on a mission to help the shifters, vampires, elves, and other members of this community who have managed to escape that dangerous world. Then she meets Karl. Though they see each other only once, and only for a moment, she cannot get him out of her mind. But he’s human. He’ll die. Is she willing to spend the rest of her immortal life alone?

Excerpt from The Discovery

“The rain is ending, and I should head back.”

         Karl hastily stood, also. “Do you really have to go?” He’d just found her—he couldn’t lose her. He held out his hand to her, hoping she’d change her mind, take it, and stay with him.

         Her lips tilted down at the corners, and her eyes clouded. She sighed and looked down at her empty hands. “Yes, I’m afraid so. Thank you for keeping me company. I really enjoyed it.”

         He didn’t know what to say to make her stay, but he knew he didn’t want her to leave.

His feelings must have shown on his face because she reached out and took both his hands in hers.

“Thank you, Karl. I wish I could stay longer, but the sun is coming out, and I don’t want them to come looking for me.”

She arched up on her toes and pulled him closer, reaching up to kiss him. He closed his eyes and waited for her touch. It was nothing like he had ever experienced. Her lips were warm and inviting. The word that came to his mind was home. He never wanted this kiss to end.

She pulled away, and he opened his eyes. The clouds broke, and a beam of sunlight shone in his face. He blinked to adjust his vision and froze. Avalyn was nowhere in sight.

         His heart beat faster as he frantically looked around for her.

How could she move so quickly? Which direction is she going?

He moved down the stream away from the waterfall, scurrying along the uneven ground as quickly as he could. They had been heading south all along, and perhaps they had been moving toward her car or her lodging.

She has to be here.

The stream made a turn to the right and disappeared behind a clump of trees and bushes. He broke through a small gap in the vegetation to find her standing on a rock near the edge of the water. The air around her back shimmered, and large butterfly wings appeared. She flapped them and rose a couple of feet before disappearing entirely in the same type of shimmer.

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Monday, September 13, 2021

Amber Daulton and her New Release

Amber Daulton is the author of the romantic-suspense series Arresting Onyx and several standalone novellas. Her books are published through Daulton Publishing, The Wild Rose Press, and Books to Go Now, and are available in ebook, print on demand, audio, and foreign language formats. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and demanding cats.

Character Interview

Beverley: What’s your name?

Susanna: Susanna Lorican. I’m the youngest of five children.

Beverley: Where did you grow up?

Susanna: In Derby, in the southern part of Derbyshire at my father’s manor. It’s in the country, a couple hours north of London.

Beverley: During what time period does your story take place?

Susanna: My story takes place in the Year of our Lord 1834. William IV sits on the British throne, but the time period is still often refereed to as the Regency Era even though the Prince Regent—who later became George IV—has long passed.

Beverley: What’s your story/back story? Why would someone come up with a story about you?

Susanna: I’ve been in love with my older brothers’ childhood friend for as long as I can remember. Unfortunately, Camden always saw me as a pest and didn’t pay much attention to me. Isn’t that always the way? But I think Amber, my author, wanted to bring us together after we have both had a chance to mature and experience life. Granted, Camden experienced much more than I did—he’s eight years older than I am—but I’m not the naive girl most everyone believes me to be. I have reasons for everything I do, even if it may seem foolish at the time.

Beverley: What’s your goal in this story?

Susanna: To marry the man I love. Camden and I have had a long courtship, and it’s finally our wedding day. We’re eager to embrace our new life together, but fate seems to be conspiring against us.

Beverley: What conflicts are you facing?

Susanna: Everything that could go wrong, does. I have a secret that’s been eating away at me, and there is only one solution to the problem—marrying my betrothed. But with an unexpected snowstorm blowing in and threatening to cancel the wedding, I may be in serious trouble.

Beverley: Do you have a plan for resolving them?

Susanna: Everyone is telling me to postpone the wedding until spring, but it’s impossible. I have to keep strong and see my Christmas wedding through to the end, somehow.

Beverley: Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

Susanna: Yes! My story takes place on my wedding day, so I assume some readers would be put off by that. But rest assured, my story isn’t a book two or a continuation of another story. It’s a complete standalone novella about two people who are already madly in love. Camden and I are ready for married life and will do anything to reach the altar.

Most romance books are about people meeting and falling in love, but there’s little detail to the wedding, marriage life, and the possible children to come. Amber Daulton wanted something different for Camden and me, so she’s telling our disastrous wedding story and showing how love triumphs in the face of adversity.

I hope you give Forever Winter a chance!

Blurb for Forever Winter:

A perfect Christmas wedding, a snowstorm, and a shocking secret. What could go wrong?

Susanna Lorican must marry the man she loves before the truth is discovered, or face the gossip of the ton. With an unexpected snowstorm injuring the minister, her future hangs in the balance.

Viscount Camden Beckinworth vows to keep his bride safe, even if he must betray her confidence. When their love is put to the test, how will he uphold her honor without jeopardizing his own?

Excerpt from Forever Winter:

Oh, my. The air in her lungs froze as he teased and tasted her lips in a decadent, feather-soft kiss. She moaned into his mouth and closed her eyes.

“You are so beautiful.” He trailed his lips down her neck.

“Camden.” She gasped and gripped his broad shoulders for an anchor in the storm of bliss threatening to sweep her under. Spots dotted her vision like twinkling stars peeking through dark clouds. She blinked several times and nodded to the entryway. “We must control ourselves. Anyone could see.” The smirk crawling up his cheeks clenched something deep and primal inside her. She breathed harder and inched closer to his heaving chest.

“Let them. We are betrothed. Two people in love who are about to wed are expected to kiss.”

“Kiss, yes,” she whispered. “You, my lord, make love with your lips.” Heat flamed in her cheeks and surely reddened her face.

Camden laughed and trailed his fingers up her bare arm to the puffed sleeve. “Do I? You have never admitted that before.”

“There are some things you should not be privy to.”

“Really? I’m honored that my bride appreciates the way I kiss. If she didn’t, what kind of man would that make me?”

She stepped away and smacked his biceps. “There are eyes and ears everywhere, Camden. Especially today. I’m positive the servants are already gossiping that we are spending time together on the one day we should keep our distance. It is bad luck.” And since their chaperone had left them unaccompanied, she expected another servant to arrive any minute, courtesy of her mother.

Camden drew her back into his arms and brushed his lips across her hairline. “I make my own luck. We control our destiny, Susanna; no one else. Besides, you have nothing to worry about. The one activity we shared truly worth gossiping about will never reach the light of day.”

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Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Seelie Kay and her New Release

Award-winning author Seelie Kay writes about lawyers in love, sometimes with a dash of kink. Writing under a nom de plume, the former lawyer and journalist draws her stories from more than 30 years in the legal world. Seelie’s wicked pen has resulted in nineteen works of fiction, including the new paranormal romance series Donovan Trait, as well the erotic romance Kinky Briefs series and The Feisty Lawyers romantic suspense series. She also authored The Last Christmas, The Garage Dweller, A Touchdown to Remember, The President’s Wife, The President’s Daughter, Seizing Hope, The White House Wedding, and participated in the romance anthology Pieces of Us.

When not spinning romantic tales, Seelie ghostwrites nonfiction for lawyers and other professionals. Currently, she resides in a bucolic exurb outside Milwaukee, WI, where she enjoys opera, the Green Bay Packers, gourmet cooking, organic gardening, and an occasional bottle of red wine.

Seelie is an MS warrior and ruthlessly battles the disease on a daily basis. Her message to those diagnosed with MS: Never give up. You define MS, it does not define you! 

Beverley: Why do you write romance?

Seelie: Because I am fascinated by the games people play to find and secure a lasting relationship, which is not always love. There’s the chase, the courtship, the falling, the surrender. That’s what I try to capture in my stories.

Beverley: Do you prefer a certain type of romantic hero?

Seelie: I adore smart, dashing gentlemen who aren’t afraid to live on the edge. They can be a bad boy, a billionaire, a prince, or a secret agent. That hint of danger just hooks me! However,  they have to be paired with strong, independent women who aren’t afraid to fight for what they want, even love.

Beverley: Why did you write “Ye Gods! The Law is an Ass?”

Seelie: Donovan Trait is a vampire lawyer. In the human world, a very respected lawyer. I wanted to give him the opportunity to shine in the vampire world. So I created a scenario where his turned vampire bride Shirley is unfairly punished for an unintentionally violating their marital agreement, as well as other outdated, outrageous, and outright discriminatory laws—she unintentionally  To survive and protect their unborn child, they must not only fight back, but also rebel. In this instance, human history provides them with the path. That gave me the opportunity to draw parallels between the fight for human rights and the rights of vampires who aren’t purebloods. It also allowed me to poke at the continued need of both societies to embrace social change. Perhaps surprisingly, the vampires lag far behind the humans in terms of equality and individual freedoms. However, in the end, the message is clear: Whether human or vampire, an individual is entitled to certain rights and liberties. And no human or vampire has a right to deny them.

Blurb for Ye Gods! The Law is an Ass:

 It was the Great Lie, and it could destroy the Vampire Nation.

In First, We Kill All the Lawyers, vampire lawyer Donovan Trait survived repeated attacks by a serial killer. Now, after violating a marital agreement with the Vampire Coalition, and several ancient Vampire Laws, Donovan, and his newly-turned vampire bride are on the run. You see, in exchange for permitting a pure-blood vampire to marry a turned human, the Traits agreed to allow vampire scientists to monitor the conception and birth of their children. When Judge Shirley Magnusen Trait turns up accidentally pregnant on her wedding day, the fury of the Coalition is unleashed. The tribunal recommends unacceptable punitive action and the Traits are forced to flee to a mysterious island of vampire nuns. The Traits are, by profession, seekers of the truth. But this time, the truth may not set them free. In fact, it could start a revolution. Will the Traits escape the clutches of the Coalition and keep their babies safe? Or will their family be…eliminated?

Excerpt from Ye Gods! The Law is an Ass:

Jonathan opened the envelope and reviewed the report. When he got to the last page, his eyes grew wide. “Donovan, it seems Shirley had a reason for that lightheadedness.”

Donovan gasped. “What is it?”

His father handed him the document and pointed at the bottom of the page. “She’s pregnant.”

Donovan grabbed at the wall. Overwhelmed with unfamiliar emotion, he settled onto a chair and rested his head in his hands. “Ye Gods,” he muttered. “I’m going to be a father.”

“And I am to be a grandfather, finally. However, I am afraid the Coalition may have a problem with this. They may not permit your marriage today or anytime soon.”

Donovan Trait turned to his father, his eyes filled with fury. “Why does it matter? We’re already married in the human world and we are about to repeat our vows before all in the Vampire Kingdom. This doesn’t change anything. It’s not like we are going to have a child out of wedlock. We have broken no laws.”

Jonathan Trait arched a fluffy white brow. “We need to discuss this, son.” He sat beside him. “The problem is, you explicitly agreed to allow the Coalition to oversee the conception and birth of any children born of this joining. Every step of the process was to be observed, studied, and documented. You know this.”

“So, they are going to force us to terminate the pregnancy and start over?” Donovan groaned. “It’s too late. I will not force her to start over. They can be voyeurs the next time. I am sure Shirley will have no problem with the monitoring of her pregnancy. It’s not like she can consult with a human physician. They would not understand that her child may have fangs in utero. And the blood work…” He shuddered. “I can’t imagine what…”

Jonathan frowned. “The agreement says from the point of conception, son.  You know what sticklers they are. Our women became barren more than a century ago. We need to understand why. From a scientific perspective, we need to know exactly what was different, so we can find a solution.”

Donovan harrumphed. “Seriously? Did they wish to observe while I made love to my wife? That’s ludicrous. Horny old bastards.”

Jonathan chuckled. “Some of those old fuddie-duddies would stroke out if forced to watch a virile man like you seduce his wife.” His expression turned somber. “Let’s look at the facts as we know them. As a lawyer, that’s a process with which you are familiar.

“Human women can’t carry a vampire child to term. We know that. They miscarry. The human uterus is simply not strong enough to withstand the damage caused by a developing vampire fetus. Those fangs shred the amniotic sac. However, we also don’t know if a female vampire can carry a human baby to term. Shirley may not be able to provide the fetus with the nutrition that it needs to develop properly.

“In addition, we don’t know the point of conception, which means we don’t know if Shirley was fully turned when she conceived. We also don’t know what the genetic makeup of the baby will be and whether that will change as the pregnancy progresses. Furthermore, we don’t know whether the baby’s genetics will alter after birth. We don’t know what the child will need to survive. We don’t know much.

“That raises several questions, Donovan. Is Shirley’s life in danger? And is your child’s life in danger? Not just physically and genetically, but socially. The baby is an anomaly. To some, an adnomination. A freak. He or she will constantly be in danger. If you had kept to the agreement, she and the baby would have been protected. Now everything is at risk.”

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Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Darlene Fredette and her New Release

Darlene resides on the Atlantic Coast of Canada where the summers are too short, and the winters are too long. She writes contemporary romances with a focus on plot-driven page-turners. When not working on her next book, she can be found with her husband, her daughter, and her yellow Labrador.

2020 Character Interview

Beverley: What’s your name?

Carly: Carly Redd

Beverley: Where did you grow up?

Carly: Halifax, Nova Scotia

Beverley: During what time period does your story take place?

Carly: Current date. Summer.

Beverley: What’s your story/back story? Why would someone come up with a story about you?

Carly: I worked as a bartender while earning a degree in Business and Marketing. I then started making ice cream. My story is fun because who doesn’t love ice cream! 😊 (smile)

Beverley: What’s your goal in this story?

Carly: To open my own ice cream shop… and to get through my ex’s engagement party that I am forced to attend.

Beverley: What conflicts are you facing?

Carly: To not fall for my pretend boyfriend, who happens to be a hunky firefighter.

Beverley: Do you have a plan for resolving them?

Carly: I lost all resolve as soon as I got to know Noah.

Beverley: Is there anything else you’d like us to know about you?

Carly: You’ll have to read my story to find out 😉 (wink)

Blurb for Cherry Red:

This summer, ice cream entrepreneur Carly Redd's only focus is expanding her business—until she's coerced into attending her ex's engagement party. Showing up without a date is unthinkable. She reluctantly agrees to be escorted by her brother’s co-worker, although doing so breaks her rule of not dating firefighters.

The daughter of the town’s fire chief should wear a Do Not Touch sign, but firefighter Noah Harding's interest blazed the moment he saw Carly. Agreeing to be her fake boyfriend is a no-brainer, but convincing Carly to trust him with her heart is harder than extinguishing a fire.

Overstepping the platonic-only rule is as dangerous as fire and ice swirling into tempting combustion.

Excerpt for Cherry Red:

“This might seem like a strange question, especially since we’ve just met, but would you be interested in going out for a coffee? Or an ice cream?” Noah rested an arm on the bar.

Carly glanced down at her jeans and black T-shirt embroidered with the company name and logo…a cluster of red cherries. In a room full of women all dolled up in fancy—and some a bit scanty—dresses, why would this incredibly handsome man ask her on a date? “I appreciate the offer, but I’m not interested…”

Noah raised a brow. “I know you like ice cream, so is it the coffee, or me?”

“What? No. I mean, yes.” She took a second to collect her scrambled thoughts. “I like coffee. I just don’t hang out with firefighters.” Not that he was a real firefighter. Did impersonators count in her rules of men to avoid? She never dated a stripper, but she wasn’t sure she could have a relationship with a guy who was paid to take off his clothes and have other women fawn over him. Not that the guy asked her on a date…just a simple coffee. His frown made her feel badly. “I’m sorry. It’s nothing personal.”

“Burnt in the past? No pun intended.” He smiled.

She couldn’t help but smile back. “Something like that.”

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