Dianne Maguire: What Matters Most (Giveaway)

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Dianne will be awarding an eCopy of What Matters Most to 3 randomly drawn winners via Rafflecopter during the tour. Click here for the Rafflecopter. Click the banner above to follow the tour and increase your chances of winning.

About What Matters Most

There is good love and bad love. Good sex and bad sex. And sometimes it’s hard to know the difference.

Paediatrician and mother Mia Sandhurst is scraping to keep her marriage together after her husband of 25 years breaks her heart. Finally facing reality, Mia embarks on a series of outlandish new behaviours to make startling discoveries about herself, love and life.

But the lies and betrayal Mia endures are nothing compared to those of her 15 year old patient, Rachel Hooper.

Set on the magical coast of the Fleurieu Peninsula, What Matters Most is a story of love, family, misplaced loyalty and how our choices shape who we are.



When her family arrived, Rachel’s condition was stable, but she was still in a coma.

Mia left the treatment room for the waiting area to see Jack in discussion with a short, round woman wearing a brown coat and woollen cap from which locks of red hair fading to grey seemed to be struggling for an escape. Her chin jutted as though she was fighting for her life, and even from a distance Mia could see her blue eyes bulging with anger. Beside her, a dungareed man of medium stature, with the stoop that comes from back neglect, listened with no show of emotion or facial expression, his hands clasped behind his back. Tim, morosely silent but actively listening, held the hand of a boy aged about seven whose round face, topped with a mop of dark hair like his sister’s, moved silently and intently from his mother to Jack as they each spoke.

BookCover_WhatMattersMost copy‘Mr and Mrs Hooper, I’m Dr Sandhurst.’ Mia stepped up and extended her hand first to Peter, who shook it flaccidly and flicked dark, seemingly bottomless eyes towards her for a brief moment.

‘I’m Annie,’ the woman said with a stiff smile and a perfunctory shake of Mia’s hand. ‘And this is Ben, our youngest.’

‘Hello, Ben.’ Mia shook his hand to elicit a wry grin before leading the way towards a room in the treatment area. Jack bid his farewells in a way that made it clear to Mia that he and the family knew each other well.

The moment they entered the small interview room and sat on the trio of mustard vinyl chairs facing the narrow desk, Annie let forth as though she had held back for long enough.

‘This cannot be true, Dr Sandhurst. It is not like Rachel,’ she said, absently watching Ben climb onto Tim’s knee. ‘Yes … she can be unpredictable … Yes, she’s stubborn about simple things like refusing to have a shower … But to her credit she has never followed the crowd and she would never ever drink alcohol … and as for taking drugs, well it’s just ludicrous to even entertain the idea.’ Her blue eyes shone more than would be natural and she swallowed with difficulty.

Gently closing the door, Mia knew she was about to make a highly provocative suggestion, but she was experienced enough to know the reality — a harsh new reality that had to be faced sooner or later by the family. ‘I gather Rachel was on her own in the lounge room for quite a while, once her friend Cassie had gone to bed and before Tim found her in the bathroom,’ she said sitting on the swivel chair behind the desk. ‘It makes me wonder if she deliberately took the alcohol and drugs with the intention of harming herself.’

Annie sprang from her seat like a giant cork. ‘That’s insulting and ridiculous. How dare you even suggest …’ She promptly sat again as though pushing away any semblance of thought about the words she was about to utter.

Mia cast a glance at Peter’s persistently bland expression, now intently aimed at the mottled blue carpet. Then at Tim, who muttered something about bullshit.

‘No, it’s quite feasible actually,’ Mia persisted, one eyebrow arching. ‘Rachel would not be the first troubled teen to overdose on alcohol or drugs because she is overwhelmed by problems. And she wouldn’t be the last. Hopefully, one of our psychologists will get her to talk about it.’

Annie Hooper’s eyes widened. ‘I’d prefer the shrinks left her alone. They cause more harm than good in my opinion.’

Over the following minutes Mia tried to make allowances for the parents’ rigid denial of the possibility that their daughter was deeply troubled. Shock and even the will to protect family dignity may have been factors, but these people stubbornly refused to relent, despite her most determined efforts at convincing them that much care was needed because their daughter could be in grave danger of making a repeat attempt on her life.

‘Mm, it’s all a bit of a mystery,’ Mia said, finally giving up. ‘But we shall know more when Rachel regains consciousness. The good news is that there doesn’t seem to have been any damage done to her heart muscle.’ She stood and a spontaneous sigh escaped her. ‘You can see Rachel very briefly, then I suggest you go home and get some sleep. That way you’ll be fresh for her tomorrow.

 About the Author

AuthorPhoto_WhatMattersMost copyDianne Maguire is a social worker turned novelist with over 20 years’ experience in child welfare and protection.

She has won the Pauline Walsh Prize in the Eastwood/Hills Regional Annual Literary Awards and in 2010 she co-wrote a collection of non-fiction short stories, It’s About Time, for children’s charity Time for Kids. Her articles have been published in state and national newspapers and magazines.

Although Dianne lives in Adelaide with her husband Jerome, she does most of her writing on the Fleurieu Peninsula. What Matters Most is her debut novel.


Nicole Zoltack: The Test of Time


About The Test of Time

While vacationing in England, Katia spies a large mansion and somehow passes through time, landing in the arms of the otherworldly and enchanting Lord Landon. Trapped in a parallel Regency-era, Katia struggles to not fall for Landon but his charm proves too much for her. Just when she is about to confess her love for him, Katia travels through time yet again.

If Katia can’t master the test of time, she’ll never be reunited with Landon.

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“You dreamt of me?”

“Yes, many times. I always knew one day you would find your way to me.” She expected him to color again, but the look he leveled her with made her blush. “What did we do in your dreams?” Her voice carried despite the quietness of her tone.

“We… ah… got to know each other quite well.” He coughed and drank some of his mulled wine.

About the Author

nicole photoNicole Zoltack loves to write in many genres, especially romance, whether fantasy, paranormal, or regency. She’s also an editor for MuseItUp Publishing and works as a freelance editor.

When she’s not writing about knights, superheroes, or zombies, she loves to spend time with her loving husband and three energetic young boys. She enjoys riding horses (pretending they’re unicorns, of course!) and going to the PA Renaissance Faire, dressed in garb. She’ll also read anything she can get her hands on. Her current favorite TV show is The Walking Dead.

To learn more about Nicole and her work, visit her blog at http://NicoleZoltack.blogspot.com. She can be found on most any social media site under Nicole Zoltack. Stalk away!

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Sabrina York: Guard Dog (Stone Hard SEALS and Hot SEAL Crossover Novella)

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Love Hot SEALs?

What if all your favorite military romance authors got together and wrote a series of HOT SEAL romances in the same world?

This is Cat Johnson’s HOT SEALS Kindle World. It’s an exciting opportunity for you to discover new authors writing in the genre you love in a world you know!

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Cat Johnson’s Hot SEALs Kindle World launched on August 4th. Check out all the scorching books by NYT and USA Today bestselling authors in this exciting crossover adventure!

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About Guard Dog

A scorching sequel to Stone Hard SEALs

Mason Steele expected to be a SEAL until the day he died. And he was. A pity they revived him. Now he’s been mustered out of the Navy and his life seems wholly unsatisfying. He misses the action; he misses the camaraderie; he misses being able to use his tightly-honed skills. He’s lucky to have snagged this job with GAPS—the Guardian Angel Protective Services—it provides some hope for his future. But the last thing he wants to do is babysit a spoiled heiress who is obsessed with the color of her nail polish and carries a Chihuahua in her purse.

But there’s more to Pansy Hightower than can be seen at first glance. She’s smart, sassy and determined to save the business her late mother built. She resents having a guard dog and does what she can to lose her muscular shadow. But when it becomes clear that someone is targeting her—perhaps for the same kind of fatal “accident” that befell her mother, she decides having the 240 pound SEAL with killer instincts and lethal hands at her back might be a good idea after all.

Until they share a kiss, that is. Until those lethal hands prove they have other talents as well. Talents that leave her breathless and wanting and weak. The last thing either of them wants is a relationship, but the scorching passion between them cannot be denied…even though it will undoubtedly spell disaster for them both.


“All right then.” Pansy’s surprisingly chipper voice cut through his dismal mood. It had been mortifying admitting his weakness, his failure, especially to her. It was something of a relief that she didn’t seem to understand the deep implications of his confession.

He dared a glance at her. Even bedraggled and tattered as she was, he wanted her. She shot him a bright smile. It made him glower. “All right then, what?” he muttered.

“All right, then. You’ll do.”

You’ll do? You’ll do? Irritation riffled through him. When she tipped her head and her ponytail swung, his ire blossomed.

“But I don’t know about the others.”

“The others are excellent.” He wasn’t sure why he was arguing with her. He wanted this job. He wanted to be with her. He wanted to keep her safe. And for some reason, thought of some other dude, even one of his brothers in arms, stepping into the duty rankled.

“But I don’t know them.”

“We’ll arrange a meet.” It was standard procedure…when they weren’t on a covert job.

She put out a lip. God he wanted to suckle it. Maybe it would be better if someone else took over. He was far too attracted to her to keep a clear mind. “But I want you,” she said.

Again, her words made something hard and needy sizzle through his bowels. He knew what she meant. He knew she was talking about her protection and not some scalding, savage coupling in the big bed in the next room that was far too close to be successfully ignored.

It was a testament to his delusional state that all he could think about was sex. All he could think about was stripping her naked and taking her here and now. That she wanted it as much as he did.

He imagined he could smell her arousal in the air, which was ridiculous.

A woman like her and a guy like him?

Yeah. Nucking futs.

“No worries. I’ll be on your team. But we’ll have at least three others.” Two on days and two on nights. Although, if he had his way, she wouldn’t be going out again. Certainly not to clubs where he couldn’t guarantee her safety. On that note, he fixed her with a dark look. “We need to talk about security. You’re going to have to make some lifestyle changes until this threat is contained.”

“Like what?”

“Like going out in public.”

“I have a business to run.”

“Is that what they call it? Partying all night with entitled socialites like Monique Dupree?” He didn’t mean to snarl it as he did. But it hardly mattered. She was utterly unaffected by his ferocity.

“Those entitled socialites are my customer base. More than that. They are my influencers.”

He had no idea what that meant. “Too many people. Too many blind spots. We need to keep you in controllable environments.” Like this hotel. Like this suite. That bed…

“Controllable environments?”

Again with the pouting lip. God. It was driving him crazy.

With a grunt, he pushed to his feet—ignoring the sharp string of yips this elicited from Ratacus—and prowled to the wall of windows, pulling back the curtains and peering out at the night in a pretense of assessing any potential hazards. Her suite was on the thirtieth floor. Doubtful anyone would enter from the balcony. Still, he checked the lock on the door. Probably wouldn’t hurt to install a door brace on the front door. He strode back to the foyer and jiggled the handle. Yeah, definitely a brace. He made a mental note of other upgrades the suite needed, of the things he needed to check. First order of business was to sweep for any bugs and check for hidden cameras.

He glanced over at Pansy and immediately revised his priorities. She was leaning back with her head resting on the sofa, her eyes closed. Her face was a cameo of perfection, but it was wreathed in exhaustion. First order of business was to get her to bed.

Lust lanced him.


No. Get her in bed.


By herself.

So she could sleep.

Aw, hell.

His gaze skated over her and he took in the rips in her dress, the scrapes on her legs and the dirt smudging her cheek. He should have tended to her wounds right off the bat. He should have seen to her comfort. He should have—

An ominous clicking sound and a sudden riffle of movement near his ankles captured his attention and he glanced down.

Lola, in her pink tutu glared up at him, her lip curled over impressively pointy teeth. Mason tipped his head to the side and met her challenging gaze with one of his own. It said: Really? Whatcha gonna do, Ratacus?

He probably shouldn’t have.

She lifted her leg.

And peed on his boots.

“Son of a bitch.” He didn’t mean to boom as he leaped back, but he did. Pansy shot up, her eyes wide. “What?” she cried. “What is it?”

He shot her a contrite look. “Your dog peed on my boots.”

“She does that.” Pansy huffed a sigh and headed for the powder room to grab a hand towel. “One of the reasons I don’t date.” She knelt before him and mopped up the puddle.

He should have stooped to help her, but honestly, he couldn’t. He couldn’t move to save his life. Because there she was, kneeling before him, with her head so close…

A scintillating thought, a captivating vision, a scalding need rose like the hydra. That, and a lowering realization.

He was a pervert. A goddamn pervert.

She was cleaning his fucking boots for God’s sake.

“You need a shower.”

Right. No idea why he blurted that.

Well, maybe one idea. He desperately needed her to stand. To move away, before he lost his mind and did something insane and necessary, like pull her closer.

She looked up at him. He forced himself to step away, he had to. Or his erection might have brushed her cheek.

And that would have been a disaster.

“Yeah. Um. You’re all banged up. We should get some antiseptic on those scrapes. Do you have a first aid kit?”

She said nothing so he glanced at her. That she was staring at his crotch sent a bolt of lightning through him. Her tongue peeped out and she lifted her gaze. He could have sworn he saw something simmering there. He tried mightily to ignore it.

Surely it wasn’t what he thought. Imagined. Ached for.

“Do you? Have a first aid kit?”

She shook her head. “I have no idea.” Nearly a whisper.

“I’ll call the concierge.” This was a penthouse suite. Surely there was a concierge. “Why don’t you go…um, clean up and I’ll call down for something.”

She stood slowly, holding his gaze. Something about her, her energy, her intensity, had shifted. It made him antsy. It made him restless. It made him hungry. She turned around—his heart sank—but then she said, softly, with a tentative quiver to her voice, “Could you unzip me?”

Holy. Fuck.

She peeped at him over her shoulder. Her eyes, so beautiful and blue, bore into his. “I can’t do it myself.”

He was certain she could. She was a grown woman. She’d been dressing—and undressing—herself for years. But he couldn’t refuse. Not when she asked so politely. “S-sure.” Hopefully she missed the stutter.

She could not have missed the fact that his fingers shook as he tried to grasp the tiny teardrop at the top of her zipper. Why the fuck did it have to be so tiny? It took forever for him to make the long journey down her spine, partly because the damn zipper kept catching and partly because he really wanted to savor the journey. As it advanced, more and more of her creamy skin was exposed. He wanted nothing more than to place his palm on her, to stroke her. To feel the heat of her skin against this.

But she’d asked him to unzip her. Not make a move.

It was a damn good thing he’d developed indomitable willpower as a SEAL. Denying himself things crucial to his being—air, water, food—was par for the course in their training.

This was by far the most difficult denial of all.

When he reached the bottom of the zipper, when a hint of a crease at the base of her spine was exposed, he stepped back. Though it cost him. “There,” he said.

Jesus, God. He was going to heaven for this.

He fucking better.

His restraint was nothing short of a penance.

But then…

Holy God.

But then…she shifted her shoulders and the scrap of material drifted to the floor. She shot another glance at him, something that was too much of an invitation to be misunderstood or misconstrued, and, wearing nothing but her skimpy bra and panties, padded into the bathroom.


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About Sabrina York

Her Royal Hotness, Sabrina York, is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of hot, humorous stories for smart and sexy readers. Her titles range from sweet & sexy to scorching romance. Visit her webpage at www.sabrinayork.com to check out her books, excerpts and contests. Get updates and alerts from Sabrina here: HotSheet Sign Up.

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Recent releases from Sabrina York


Rachel L. Demeter: Finding Gabriel

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Rachel Demeter will be awarding a Momentum bundle of 3 romance titles chosen by the winner to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour. Click here for the Rafflecopter. Click on the banner above to follow the tour and increase your chances of winning.

The Timelessness of Historical Romance 

“The best love is the kind that awakens the soul and makes us reach for more, that plants a fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds.”

– Nicholas Sparks

When we set off to read a romance novel, we expect to encounter an emotionally charged story, relatable characters, and universal themes. True, genuine love surpasses time and place, overcomes seemingly impossible barriers, and manifests itself in the most unexpected ways. True love is founded upon kindness, compassion, empathy, sacrifice, and friendship. It is full of surprises and revelations—and its eternal power touches our minds and hearts with an astonishing force.

These are common elements which enrich the genre and equip romantic stories with a poignant, unique, and timeless quality. They focus on the trials of tribulations of the human heart, and exist independently from time and place. Indeed—romance novels are special in that they showcase humanity’s continuous quest for hope, personal growth, pursuit of dreams, and the ability to conquer internal and external obstacles in spite of all oppositions.

Historical romance embodies the notion of timelessness even more so. It shows us that, no matter the location or century, the basic elements of romance endure. The hero and heroine still seek the same end goals, are still driven by the same forces, and are still swept by the same emotions.

The most satisfying historical romances, however, further incorporate the cultural fabric of the era and seamlessly weave it into the relationship’s very fabric. These historical elements add depth to the characterizations and story by demonstrating the unique complications of a particular time and setting.

Finding Gabriel emerged from my love of French history and unconventional romances. I have always been drawn to the darker facets of love, and these elements served as my central inspiration. Severely scarred inside and out, Colonel Gabriel de Laurent’s twisted past has hardened his heart and led him to the brink of utter desperation—and Ariah’s gentle nature and compassion embodies the ideal counterpoint to his darkness. However, like Gabriel, she also suffers from a tragic and ill-fated past. Gabriel and Ariah are two flawed characters who are made perfect only through their love and shared darkness.

In addition to the romance and sensual heat, Finding Gabriel offers a vivid perspective into the war-torn streets of Paris. My book truly is a historical romance; the history of the era, as well as the central figures (Napoleon makes a memorable cameo) play a significant role in both the story and characterizations. I utilized the conflicts of the time period as a way to echo Gabriel and Ariah’s personal battles across a universal scope. Furthermore, issues of orphans, inheritance, illegitimate children, and the absence of women’s suffrage and feminine independence are all authentic to the period and play a noteworthy role in Finding Gabriel.

So, what exactly makes historical romance timeless? Simple. People are people no matter what era they live in. Sure, they may dress differently, hold slightly different values, or speak in a different manner… but basic, human emotion never really changes.

And that is the magic of romance novels.

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About Finding Gabriel

Colonel Gabriel de Laurent departed for the war intending to die.

After a decade of bloodstained battlegrounds while fighting in Napoleon’s army, Gabriel returns to the streets of Paris a shattered and haunted soul. Plagued by inner demons, he swallows the barrel of his flintlock pistol and pulls the trigger.

But fate has a different plan.

Ariah Larochelle is a survivor. Orphaned at twelve and victim to a devastating crime, she has learned to keep her back to walls and to trust no one. But when she finds a gravely injured soldier washed up on the River Seine, she’s moved by compassion. In spite of her reservations, she rescues him from the icy water and brings him into her home.

Now scarred inside and out, Gabriel discovers a kindred spirit in Ariah – and feelings he imagined lost forever reawaken as he observes her strength in the face of adversity. But when Ariah’s own lethal secrets unfold, their new love is threatened by ancient ghosts. Can Gabriel and Ariah find hope in the wreckage of their pasts—or will the cycle of history repeat again?

Perfect for fans of Gaelen Foley’s Lord of Ice and Judith James’s Broken Wing, Finding Gabriel features all the dark romance, searing passion, and historical intrigue of The Phantom of the Opera and Les Misérables.



Ariah’s eyes blinked open. Their heads were mere centimeters apart, mouths sharing the same breaths of air. She took in the irregular features of Gabriel’s face – half achingly handsome, half a testament to years of torment. Tears threatening to surface, she pressed her lips against the uneven skin, not daring to leave a piece of him unloved. A salty tang flavored her tongue – and she realized that he was weeping.

Clasping both of her hands in one of his own, he stepped backward, leading her away from the railing. She followed without thought, her soul carrying her feet. Those powerful, haunted eyes never left her face as he edged toward the center of the roof. What a breathtaking and surreal figure he made, silhouetted against Paris’s eternal night sky. A light breeze ruffled the material of his greatcoat. Carried by the wind’s breath, the greatcoat billowed around his body like a pair of colossal wings. Beneath this light, he resembled a fallen angel. Her legs grew heavy, each one weighed down with desire and anticipation.

His hand slipped free, and Ariah’s knees nearly gave way at the loss of his touch. Then he stripped away his greatcoat, eyes still locked on her own, and suavely smoothed the material across the flooring. Gabriel lowered to his knees and held out his hand, beckoning Ariah forward with the raw magnetism of his eyes.

Pulse thrumming, she moved forward until she stood on the edge of the greatcoat. Moonlight flashed against his raven hair, brightening the locks to a rich amber. His shoulders were strong and wide, and Ariah was struck with the desire to feel his muscles constrict beneath her fingers. Indeed, he resembled a crouching panther – dark, smooth, and infinitely powerful. Admiring his silhouette, she wordlessly stared down at him. She attempted a smile, but her dancing nerves prohibited the simple movement. “Touch me. Touch me, Gabriel…”

About the Author

MEDIA KIT RachelDemeter_portrait copyRachel L. Demeter lives in the beautiful hills of Anaheim, California with Teddy, her goofy lowland sheepdog, and her high school sweetheart of eleven years. She enjoys writing dark, poignant romances that challenge the reader’s emotions and explore the redeeming power of love.

Imagining dynamic worlds and characters has been Rachel’s passion for longer than she can remember. Before learning how to read or write, she would dictate stories while her mother would record them for her. She holds a special affinity for the tortured hero and unconventional romances. Whether crafting the protagonist or antagonist, she ensures every character is given a soul.

Rachel endeavors to defy conventions by blending elements of romance, suspense, and horror. Some themes her stories never stray too far from: forbidden romance, soul mates, the power of love to redeem, mend all wounds, and triumph over darkness.

Her dream is to move readers and leave an emotional impact through her words.

Don’t be a stranger! Rachel loves to connect and interact with her readers!

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Sabrina York: Laird of Her Heart (Book One in the Dundragon Trilogy)

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About Laird of Her Heart

When Maggie Spencer is mysteriously transported to the Scotland of her ancestors, she is stunned to come face to face with him. Dominic Dundragon, the man she’s been half in love with her whole life. A man who’s been dead for 700 years.

They both have enemies aplenty. Will she have a chance to win his love, or will this adventure end in disaster?


Maggie yelped as, without warning, the burly warrior named Declan whipped her up into his arms and tossed her over his shoulder. To her horror, she lost the hold on her locket.

“Wait,” she cried. She wriggled to get free, but his grip was too hard. When she pummeled his back with her fists as he strode from the circle of stones, he chuckled. The beast. But to be fair, he was so large, it would have felt like a kitten batting him. “Put me down.”

“I willna,” he said. “The Mackintosh will decide how you die.”

All right. That shut her up. For a minute. “Die? Why do I need to die?” What the hell had she done to him?

The man following, an enormous blond with a scar tracking his cheek bent down to peer at her. “The Mackintosh’s doona tolerate spies.”

“I’m not a spy.” Seriously. She wriggled more and Declan smacked her ass.

Smacked her ass.

She’d kill him when she got free. Just kill him.

“Yer wearing the Cameron colors,” the blond said. “And the Mackintosh’s doona—”

“Right. I know. The Mackintosh’s doona tolerate spies.” Her head was starting to spin from being upside down and jounced around with each step. Her temper was on a short leash. “But honestly, if I were a spy, would I wear the Cameron colors? It seems a little counterproductive in my opinion. I mean, if I’m spying and all. I might as wear a sign that says, oh, I dunno, honk if you love spies.”

His brow rumpled but he didn’t respond. At least, not to her. “She speaks strangely,” he complained to Declan.

Her captor snorted a laugh. “She dresses strangely too.”

“Aye. She does at that. I’ve heard the Cameron lasses are a wild lot, but I had no idea—”

“I’m. Not. A. Cameron.” She reached out and smacked the blond, but only because he came close enough. He reared back and gaped at her—as though he’d never been smacked before—and then he quickly moved out of range.

It hardly mattered, because, apparently, they had reached their destination, a camp on the edge of the woods. The sounds of nickering horses and clanks of pots gave her her first clue—she was facing the other way, after all.

Her second clue was that Declan dropped her on the ground. She landed with an oof. She glared at him. He didn’t seem to mind in the slightest. “Go get my brother, Ewan,” he barked, and the blond trotted off to one of the larger tents.

When she stood and brushed off her jeans, Declan bristled and she shot him a sardonic glare. Did he think she was stupid enough to run away? For one thing, these enormous men had her surrounded. For another, she never ran. Not if she could help it.

Instead, she made a quick survey of her surroundings. The camp was little more than a huddle of tents with the forest on one side and a sweeping plain on the other. A small herd of horses were hobbled to one side and a deer roasted over a pit fire. An entire deer. Before she could silence the thought—she often had that problem—she said, “You killed Bambi.”

Declan’s brow rumpled. “I dinna kill anyone.” And then he asked, “Who is Bambi?”

“Never mind.” She crossed her arms and turned away pretending to ignore them. But she wasn’t. She was aware they were all staring at her like she was a curiosity in a zoo, but she was taking in tiny details as well. Like the fact that their clothes were all handmade and simple. Their hair appeared to have been cut with a chainsaw and their beards were scraggly and long. Their weapons were what made her mind really start to spin though.

One held a crossbow that dated from the thirteenth century. Another had a Mackintosh dirk that resembled one she’d seen in a museum once. Declan had a simple calfskin sporran tied to his belt.

Odd. Could she have wandered into some renaissance faire? But no. It had been evening when she stepped into the woods and now it was daytime. Early afternoon. And the acres of woods around the house belonged to the family. It couldn’t be—

“So.” She flinched as a deep, melodious voice wafted to her on a hint of humor. Shivers danced through her, along with a prickling sense of premonition. “You’ve captured a Cameron spy?”

She turned slowly and froze as her gaze landed on him. On that so-familiar face. Broad, handsome, savage. Much more captivating than the sketch had been. Much more captivating by far.

She must be hallucinating. She had to be.

He was the hero of her dreams come to life.

Dominic Dundragon, Laird of the Mackintosh clan.

Large, looming and in the flesh.

Her head went woozy. Her vision blurred. And then, for the first time in her life, she fainted.


 About the Author

Her Royal Hotness, Sabrina York, is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of hot, humorous stories for smart and sexy readers. Her titles range from sweet and sexy to scorching romance.

Website: SabrinaYork.Com

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If you love hot Highlanders, be sure to read Sabrina York’s Untamed Highlanders from St. Martin’s Press!

Hannah and the Highlander

Susana and the Scot

Lana and the Laird—Coming in 2016

Heather Hiestand: Wedding Matilda

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Heather Hiestand will be awarding a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour. Click here for the Rafflecopter. Click the banner above to follow the tour and increase your chance of winning.

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About Wedding Matilda

Sugared violets, buttercream…but he craves her kiss most of all…

Orphaned as a boy, Ewan Hales is proud to make his living as secretary to the manager at Redcake’s Tea Shop. But the startling news that he’s heir to the Earl of Fitzwalter changes everything. While tendering his resignation to lovely Matilda Redcake, however, Ewan is struck by her spirit, the luscious bow of her lips—and a realization. Matilda might not marry a working man—but will she wed a future nobleman?

Ewan’s unruly hair and roguish kisses are tempting, but Matilda has far too many problems to consider romance. With sabotage at a cake factory threatening the family empire, she must focus her considerable willpower on keeping Redcake’s from ruin—until she learns that her young son has been kidnapped. Together, she and Ewan must uncover the truth before they can savor the sweet freedom of love…

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Matilda knew Mr. Hales was the spider at the center of a web of information about Redcake’s.

The man himself had his back to her, one finger on a row of figures in an open ledger and the other on a typewriter key. She had no idea how to operate such a machine, but it did make reports easier to read, so she had insisted that her own secretary, her cousin Greggory Redcake, learn to operate one.

“Mr. Hales?” she inquired.

The finger went up in the air in a request for silence. Her eyebrows lifted. When had the man become so imperious? He probably thought she was a cakie, the Redcake’s name for waitresses. Still, she’d have expected him to be more charming. Her sister Alys said he was notorious for relationships among Redcake’s female employees, having worked his way through accounting, the Fancy, and the bakery staff.

His finger moved down the row of neatly printed numbers in the ledger. The keys clicked a few times. A pause. He turned a page in the ledger and repeated the sequence.

“Mr. Hales,” she tried again.

His fingers stopped moving, pinched around the page he was turning. His back stiffened as he slowly resumed his page turn. His other hand left the keys and he swiveled his chair around.


He remained cold. No little bow, no small obsequious smile, as she had seen from him in the past. His hair had been mussed, she now realized.

Didn’t he recognize her? “I’m Matilda Redcake.”

Her announcement brought no change in his demeanor. “I know who you are, Miss Redcake.”

About the Author

AuthorPhoto_WeddingMatilda copyHeather Hiestand was born in Illinois, but her family migrated west before she started school. Since then she has claimed Washington State as home, except for a few years in California. She wrote her first story at age seven and went on to major in creative writing at the University of Washington. Her first published fiction was a mystery short story, but since then it has been all about the many flavors of romance. Heather’s first published romance short story was set in the Victorian period, and she continues to return, fascinated by the rapid changes of the nineteenth century. The author of many novels, novellas, and short stories, she has achieved best-seller status at Amazon and Barnes and Noble. With her husband and son, she makes her home in a small town and supposedly works out of her tiny office, though she mostly writes in her easy chair in the living room.

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Elsa Winckler: Touched to the Soul #Giveaway

Elsa is giving away a copy of Touched the Heart, the first book in the series, to a random commenter.

 Interview with Elsa Winckler

Susana: What inspired you to start writing?

Elsa: All those happy endings! I’ve always loved to read and loved the happy endings but I didn’t always like the way the two would get together, so I decided to write the kind of story I like to read. I was thrilled to discover there were other people who also enjoyed reading it

Susana: What comes first: the plot or the characters?

IMGP9652 copyElsa: For me it’s the characters. I try to figure them out, sometimes I even use the Mayer Briggs personality test to really try and understand them! Once I know what makes them tick, the storyline falls into place.

Susana: Are you a plotter or a pantser?

Elsa: A pantser, I’m afraid. It used to bother me but I’ve made peace with the way a story unfolds itself. I have a vague idea of what should happen and then I let the characters tell their story – sometimes with twists that I haven’t foreseen.

Susana: What is one thing your readers would be most surprised to learn about you?

Elsa: I knit. My hands always have to be busy, so when I don’t type, I knit – in front of the television, in bed, in the car (when I’m not driving). When I concentrate on a tricky pattern, my mind wanders and it’s often then that I’d get an idea or realize how to solve a problem I was having with a story.

Susana: Is there a writer you idolize? If so, who?

Elsa: I love Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, George Eliot, the Brontë sisters. If I have to pick a favourite story, it would be Elizabeth Gaskell’s North and South – a beautiful love story between two complex characters unfolds against the backdrop of a newly industrial England – simply breathtaking (there is also a wonderful BBC DVD available with Richard Armitage as a to-die-for Mr Thornton J )

Susana: What is something you’d like to accomplish in your writing career next year?

Elsa: Up until now, I’ve written mainly category-length love stories but would like to try my hand at something with a little bit of suspense thrown in. 

TouchedToTheSoul_Cover-800x1200 copy

About Touched to the Soul

Zoe Sutherland can’t stand the pushy, arrogant architect David Cavallo. He was just too damn sure of himself, too handsome, too…everything. Maneuvered into working as the interior decorator on his latest project, a glamorous new hotel, Zoe can’t keep her mind on the job. And worse, the strange man won’t give her access to the hotel’s floor plans. How is she supposed to finish the design when she doesn’t have the plans? And when the obnoxious man distracts her with every smoldering look, every touch…

David has one goal: get rid of the pesky interior designer. Since he’s been forced into close proximity with the beautiful Zoe, everything’s gone downhill. And to make matters worse, she’s only out to further her own career—and he’s not about to give her the hotel’s plans so she can steal his ideas. He needs to get her out of his system, and sleeping with her seems like the best way to do that. When it comes to women, he’s found the best way to handle them is to love ’em and leave ’em. But something strange is happening…because after a night of loving Zoe, he’s finding it harder than ever to leave…




And then she swallowed. He bit the insides of his cheeks to prevent him from smiling. So, the lady wasn’t as cool as she pretended to be.

“I tried to contact you after Don and Caitlin’s wedding but you never answered any of my messages.”

She narrowed her eyes. “You know perfectly well why I ignored those messages,” she said primly.

He leaned forward, enjoying her obvious discomfort. “You see, that’s just it. I don’t know. You kissed me, stormed away, and ignored all the messages I sent you.”

Her lips trembled slightly. “You were the one who kissed me,” she said, her eyes stormy.

“You didn’t kiss me back?” he asked, not quite understanding why he couldn’t stop baiting her.

She inhaled audibly, bent her head for a few seconds before she opened the file. “We can go ahead with the contract. That is, if you still want me to.”

“Oh, I still want you…” he said solemnly, waiting a millisecond before he added “…to.”

Her flared nostrils were the only indication that she’d caught his meaning.

“Good.” She got up. “I’ll ask Susan to contact you for the next meeting. Please make sure whoever you send has all the information available—budget, timeline and of course if…”

He also got up slowly. “Seeing that my brother suggested we make use of your firm, I will be working with you. Directly.” He emphasized the last word. “I don’t mind doing favors, but when money is involved, I have to protect the investment we’ll be making. I have to make sure you are not just a pretty face but can actually do the job. You obviously don’t really want to work for me, but you’ve realized it’s good for business. Therefore, I have to make sure our business doesn’t suffer because of yours.”

About the Author

I have been reading love stories for as long as I can remember and when I ‘met’ the classic authors like Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, Henry James The Brontë sisters, etc. during my studies, I was hooked for life.

I married my college boyfriend and soul mate and after 39 years, 3 beautiful children and 3 grandchildren, he still makes me weak in the knees. We are fortunate to live in the picturesque little seaside village of Betty’s Bay, South Africa with the ocean a block away and a beautiful mountain right behind us. And although life so far has not always been an easy ride, it has always been an exiting and interesting one!

I like the heroines in my stories to be beautiful, feisty, independent and headstrong.  And the heroes must be strong but possess a generous amount of sensitivity. They are of course, also gorgeous!  My stories typically incorporate the family background of the characters to better understand where they come from and who they are when we meet them in the story.

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