Tag Archives: Author writing companion

Furbaby Friday with C. Becker!


Welcome C. Becker (Colleen) and her beloved furbaby. Colleen is also sharing her new release, a suspense published by The Wild Rose Press, Finding Euphoria.

Colleen: Thank you Beth for hosting me.
The biggest and best decision my husband and I ever made (other than having kids) was the addition of our Jack Russell dog, Brownie, to the family. We adopted him seven years ago, after enduring years of kids pleading to get a family dog. When I realized how deeply my youngest son was praying for a dog, I agreed. Once my husband and I made the decision to adopt, choosing a family pet suitable for our family couldn’t have been easier. We went to a house where the family was selling five-month old puppies. Brownie’s siblings ran around us, barking. Of all the dogs, Brownie was the only one who went up to my youngest daughter. He sort of just stayed next to her and didn’t bark. Like he was saying, “Take me.” His behavior sold me. We brought him home, and he took control of the house—in a good way.

Brownie is happiest when everyone is home. When the kids leave for school and college, his tail goes down, and he “knows” he’ll be alone for a while. If I’m home during the day, he’ll sleep on the couch while I work writing at the computer. When I stand up, he takes his cue that it’s time to play. He is great playing catch with his ball and he loves the dog park.

He sleeps with all the kids, rotating during the night, in different rooms. Whom Brownie sleeps with at night is always a focus around the breakfast table.
Jack Russells are known for being highly energetic animals. Brownie loves to run and at any time, can go wild, running in circles around the house. My youngest daughter takes him for 4-5 mile walks every day so he stays healthy and fit. He could walk all day, sniffing the air and everything around him. He’s also extremely protective, barking to let us know of any visitor at the door. He recognizes the sound of our cars driving down the neighborhood.

An intelligent animal, Brownie knows a few tricks, but he has trained us to let us know when he wants to eat and drink, go to the bathroom, play ball, and have a snack. His latest trick is holding off relieving his bladder in the morning until someone takes him for a long walk outside. He loves to have his belly rubbed and to snuggle up with anyone who is sitting or lying down. He enjoys attention, but has brought more love and happiness to our household than we could have ever imagined. The kids recently nicknamed him Bub, because “He’s such a Bub.” Through a unanimous vote, my novel is dedicated to him.

Finding Euphoria is a suspense novel published by The Wild Rose Press. The rating is PG-13.

BLURB:

Hailey Langley refuses to be a victim and has moved on from her traumatic past. But her marriage problems worsen when a deadly illicit drug threatens to draw her into the life she left behind.

Mark Langley has allowed his job to interfere with his marriage, but he never suspected the secrets in Hailey’s past might hold the key to solving both of his current investigations.
Together, they must unravel the mystery of the drug called Euphoria and find a way to save not only their marriage, but countless lives, before it’s too late.

EXCERPT:
He turned the bottle around in his hand and set it on the end table. “Don’t put me in this position. You know what would happen. Grace is his mother. She’s the one who needs to stay with him.”
Regret tugged at her heart. “I wouldn’t take any time away from her.”
Parker groaned. “Just you being there would make her feel uncomfortable.”
“Why?”
“You know why.”
“But I’ve stayed away for seventeen years,” she whispered.
“That was the adoption arrangement.”
She bit her lip. “I can’t stay away any longer.”
“You agreed to those terms in the contract. You terminated all parental rights.” Parker stood and paced to the kitchen.
“But it’s not fair!” She put down her water and began wringing her hands.
Straightening his arms, he leaned against the bar. “Hailey, please don’t start. I know how you feel…”
“You couldn’t possibly know how I feel. I need to see him.” She fought to control the bitterness in her voice.
“No.”
She rose, knocking over the water bottle. “He’s my son!”
“Not anymore, he isn’t.”
The rebuke stung. “He’ll always be my son!”
“When you gave him up, you promised to keep your distance.”
“I have.”
“Forever.”
The reminder lanced her heart. “You’re being unfair. He’s dying.”
He slammed his fist on the bar. “Don’t say that. He can’t die.” Parker pushed himself up and stomped near the window, raising his hands to rest on top of his head as he faced the curtain.
A muscle twitched in her hand. Her knees buckled. She sat on the edge of the couch, wringing her hands. “I was young. I couldn’t give Justin the life he deserved. I’m not asking to take him back. I only want to see him.”
Rubbing his jaw, he walked back to the couch and sat. The hard lines on his face softened. “The adoption papers were clear. No contact.” He placed his hands on top of hers and stilled them. “If the decision was mine, I would allow it, but Grace would lose it if she found out you’re Justin’s biological mother.”
Her hands squeezed into tight fists. The urge was unbearable. “I wouldn’t tell her.”
Parker ran a hand through his hair. “Argh! Don’t you understand? She’d take one look at your face and know the truth. Don’t forget, you’re the one who wanted us to protect him.”
She stood. “Well, you did a hell of a fine job, didn’t you? You divorced Grace and deserted him. Parenting takes sacrifice, Parker. You were too busy changing careers, and now he’s messed up with drugs. How did that protect him?”
Standing, he reached for her.
“No. You stay away from me.” She extended her hands and backed up a step. “Justin’s dying! Dying, Parker! And I don’t know him…You won’t let me see my own son.”
He wrapped his arms around her.
She pushed him, pummeling her fists against his chest with all her strength.
He silently took his beating.

BUY LINKS:

Finding Euphoria at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Finding-Euphoria-C-Becker-ebook/dp/B07NPX6ZBL
At Apple itunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/finding-euphoria/id1453326981?_bbid=11795784&mt=11
At Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130573850?ean=2940161287873

SOCIAL LINKS:
C.Becker website
Facebook C.Becker Author
Twitter C. Becker author
Amazon Author Page C. Becker

Author Bio: A native of western Pennsylvania, C. Becker earned a B.S. degree in Medical Technology and MT (ASCP) certification. She has worked in clinical settings analyzing body fluids and testing drugs of abuse. As an author, C. Becker has published multiple stories in various genres.

Thanks for stopping by. Please leave Colleen a comment.

Furbaby Friday With Julie Howard!


I’m glad to welcome Julie Howard to the blog to share her precious furbabies and her recent release, Spirited Quest, a mystery with a paranormal twist.

Julie: I’ve had several longtime furbabies in my life, from childhood through present. I’ll be honest here – they don’t rank up there with my children, but they are mighty darn close! My love of dogs has passed down to my two adult kids, something that is so rewarding to me. This means, of course, that now I have fur-grandbabies!

Gem is a Goldendoodle and wiggled her way into my heart from our first meeting. We’ve gone on trips together, and she comes for sleepovers when my daughter travels. She’s a great pal to my own 12-year-old puppy, a Sheltie named Patch. Gem is incredibly smart and insists on sitting up front in the passenger seat when we go somewhere. I do believe she thinks she’s human.

Holly is a one-year old Berniedoodle (St. Bernard and Golden Retriever mix),and yes, she’s BIG. She also has a huge heart and is a bundle of love, goofiness and gallons of St. Bernard slobber. I fell in love with her at first sight. My son and his girlfriend are having a blast with their furbaby and I am so proud of this new fur-grandbaby in our family.

I never forget my own fellow, though. Patch is my constant companion, quiet and gentle. He follows me from room to room, and greets me at the door when I return each day. My friend is getting old and a little slower now, and I appreciate every day we have together.

My latest release is Spirited Quest, a mystery with paranormal twist. The book is part of the Deerbourne Inn series, all stand-alone books about a fictional small town and residents in Vermont. I hope you enjoy reading about this mystery.

Blurb:
Paige Norman believes in a tangible, explainable world. When her ghost-hunting niece comes for a visit, she tries not to scoff. But someone, or something, is stirring up trouble at the Deerbourne Inn and her niece, Jillian, is at the center of the mystery.

Paige is certain the handsome Aussie photographer is behind the unexplained disturbances, and she warns her niece to stay clear. Meanwhile, Jillian gets to know the otherworldly Lady of the Deerbourne, who foretells an encounter with “two men.” Then the pranks turn dangerous. Has her niece attracted a stalker or has she conjured an evil presence? Can the culprit be the man who has captured her heart?

Excerpt:

He nodded a friendly greeting to her, his gaze grazing past to include others on the porch. “G’day, ma’am. G’day all.”
An Australian. Her heart skipped a beat. Oh, to be twenty-five, even thirty-five, again. His gaze settled on her niece, and as always happened to men where this girl was concerned, his jaw slackened, then tightened.
Next to her, Jillian grew still, lifting wide blue eyes to the newcomer. The moment passed. He was through the front door and into the lobby, and the door closed behind him.
“You’re in for some nice company this week,” Paige commented with a smile.
A frown flickered across her niece’s face. “I’ve seen him before.”
“You’ve met?”
“Not exactly. He appeared to me in a dream.” Jillian’s blue eyes were troubled as she gazed at the Inn’s front door. She lifted one hand and rubbed the back of her head, then gave a shiver. “There was blood and I was afraid.”

Bio:
Julie Howard is the author of “Crime and Paradise” and “Crime Times Two.” She is a former journalist and editor who has covered topics ranging from crime to cowboy poetry. Learn more at juliemhoward.com.

Author Links:

Website: http://juliemhoward.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/juliemhowardauthor

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18116047.Julie_Howard

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/-/e/B07D6CS4NQ

Buy Links for Spirited Quest:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2U1Q61b

IBooks: https://apple.co/2FPadg1

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/spirited-quest-julie-howard/1130412180?ean=2940161285923

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave Julie a comment.

Furbaby Friday with Sandra Dailey!


A warm welcome to Sandra and her dear little dog. Sandra is also sharing her new release with us,  a romantic suspense, The Co-Parent Project.

Sandra: I wish you could meet my furbaby, Archie. He’s a small, black and white terrier mix about seven-years-old. He was given to me by my sister four years ago. He’s quiet, well-behaved, and follows me everywhere.

Archie and I went through a scary time at the beginning of the year. He developed a bad cough and sneezing fits. I thought it was a cold. Still, I wanted to have him checked out. I made several attempts to contact his vet, to no avail. I decided it was time to find someone else.

After two hours of exams, tests, and x-rays with his new vet, I found out my little buddy was in big trouble. He had an abscessed tooth that had breached his sinus cavity, (the sneezing). Having a dental background I knew this could be fatal. He needed surgery.

His new vet was concerned about putting him under because of his loud heart murmur. Why hadn’t I been told he had a heart murmur by his old vet? A chest x-ray showed his heart wasn’t swollen, but he had a soft tissue collapse in his trachea, (the coughing). She could do the surgery, but I was ordered not to allow him to wear a collar ever again—more information I wish I’d had earlier.
The surgery was a success. But the month that followed was a challenge. We both love his new vet. It makes me wonder, though. Where would we be now if his old vet had answered her phone?

Interesting fact about Archie—he loves wearing clothes—sweaters, shirts, jackets, or just a bandana on hot days.

The Co-Parent Project

Parenting style won’t matter if they don’t all survive.

Blurb:
Luca Wolff and Joy Sullivan are competing for guardianship of their estranged, teenage nephew, Eric, after his parents are killed in a plane crash. Evidence shows the crash wasn’t an accident. Neither was a recent explosion that destroyed Luca’s house. When a fire is intentionally set in Joy’s home, suspicion points to Eric–and that’s not the end of their trouble.

Eric has been in his share of mischief, but now he has a chance to clean up his reputation. That’s hard to do when the only people who believe in you are the ones you’re accused of targeting. Just as Luca and Joy give in to romance, new information comes to light that could tear them apart along with Eric’s dream for a happy family. The three have to set aside their grief, personal issues, and disagreements to figure out who is out to kill them…and why.

Excerpt:
As soon as he walked through the door the smell of chemicals nearly drove him back outside. The odor was so strong it made his eyes water. He couldn’t take it anymore. “How can you live with the constant stench in this house?”

“I’m sorry. Mrs. Erving needed a perm today.” Joy walked in through the kitchen door carrying a squeeze bottle of mustard. “I was just making lunch. Would you like a ham and cheese sandwich?”

“No thanks,” he snarled. “All I’d be able to taste is that nasty smell.”

“How can you taste a smell?”

“You’d know if your olfactory receptors weren’t burned away. That stuff has got to cause brain damage.”

“Do you plan to claim it as a way to get Eric away from me? I wouldn’t put anything past a Wolff.”

Buy Links:
Wild Rose Press: https://bit.ly/2EmYPGj
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2NocQ9P
Barnes and Noble: https://bit.ly/2IrWA8V

Author Bio:
From childhood I’ve moved from place to place, from Indiana to Florida, stopping in several places in between. I also moved from job to job; as a waitress, soldier, retail manager, dental assistant, etc… The one thing I never had to leave behind was my imagination. Storytelling has always been my favorite way to pass time. I’ve often been told I should write a book. Finally, I did. It was so much fun: I felt I must write more, so I have. I’ve been a student of Long Ridge Writers Group and once won a short story contest with Harlequin. I currently live in North Florida with my husband, whom I torture with crazy story lines and half written manuscripts.

Contact Info:
Website/Blog: http://www.sandradailey.blogspot.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/sandradailey.author
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/sdaileyauthor
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/sandradailey
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6551048.Sandra_Dailey

Thanks for stopping by. Please leave Sandra a comment.

Furbaby Friday with Christina Lambert!


A warm welcome to Christina, here to share her wonderful  Great Pyrenees and her shifter romance, Wolf’s Challenge.

Christina: Over the years, I’ve been blessed to have some amazing furbabies come into my life. Pets are such a blessing because they love us at our best, our worst, and every stage in between. I love walking through the front door and having my dog, Yuki, greet me with tail wags and licks to my hands. Making room in my home for my sweet, gentle, giant dog was one of the best decisions I could have made.

Yuki came to my family as a stray almost two years ago. He’s a great Pyrenees, who barks at every possible noise, sheds giant tumbleweeds of hair, steals pizza crust from unsuspecting humans, and enjoys playing outside, especially when it snows. He loves kids and waits faithfully by the window every weekday at 3:30 for my daughters to get off the school bus. He keeps me company in my home office while I work and insists on sleeping on the bed at night.

My cat, Leo, passed away not long ago but she had a long, healthy life. She loved to wake me up in the middle of the night by jumping up on my stomach. During the day, she alternated between sleeping peacefully and finding things to destroy. She was an excellent spider stalker and occasionally, she was nice to the dog.

Wolf’s Challenge is the first story in the Stranger Creatures series and features Derrick and Sydney’s story. When temptingly handsome, powerful shape shifter Derrick dares shy, single mom Sydney to take a chance with him, will she rise to the challenge or will she run for safety, leaving him in the dust?

Book Description:
Nothing is as it seems in the town of Great Oaks, Virginia. Derrick has a few secrets but he’s not shy about letting elusive, single mom Sydney know he wants to leave the friend zone she’s boxed him into. Sydney has trust issues, and with good reason. Will Sydney and Derrick find their happily ever after or will the unhinged woman stalking them destroy their chance?

Excerpt:
Sydney sat in the conference room at Brass Cat Advertising, sipping her coffee and wishing the caramel latte could take her to an alternate reality. One where Derrick Porter wasn’t sitting in front of her. His presence had caught her off guard. She took another sip of her coffee and tried not to stare stupidly, but holy chocolate-covered cherries, the man was hot.

Dark hair and eyebrows made a striking contrast against his strong bone structure and fair skin. His lips, good grief. They looked so soft. His long, lean body fit nicely in a suit. The material stretched over his broad shoulders and came in at the waist. He probably had amazing six-pack abs.

When they’d met Saturday in running group, it hadn’t merely been the fog coupled with Sydney’s exhaustion and two-year streak of celibacy that made Derrick appear so handsome. Even under the bright lights of the conference room, he was gorgeous. What rotten luck that she couldn’t seem to get away from him.

Buy Links for Wolf’s Challenge:
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Wolfs-Challenge-Christina-Lynn-Lambert-ebook/dp/B07JCSLVBJ
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/wolfs-challenge-christina-lambert/1124676509
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/wolf-s-challenge-1

Author Links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/christinalynnlambert
Wordpress: https://christinalynnlambertwordpress.com
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/chris4lamb
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15900423.Christina_Lynn_Lambert
Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/Christina-Lynn-Lambert/e/B01MCYK0K7
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/christinalynnlambert

Author Bio:
A few years ago, I read my first romance novel and I was hooked, so much so that I decided to give the idea of writing a story a chance. My style is more gritty than sweet and I look forward to writing many more stories with strong heroines and imperfect but determined characters. Love, courage, hope, and second chances are a few of my favorite themes. When I’m not writing, I enjoy spending time outside and finding ways to avoid cooking. I live in beautiful Virginia with my husband, two daughters, and a sweet, hairy monster of a dog.

Thanks for stopping by. Please leave Christina a comment.

Furbaby Friday with Valerie Ullmer!


A warm welcome to Valerie and her dear furbaby, Maddie. Valerie joins us to share Maddie’s story and her Christmas romance, You for Christmas.

Valerie: Our dog, Maddie is now ten years old, but years ago when she was 10 weeks old, we adopted her and have loved every moment with her in our lives.

My husband and I had been searching for a dog to adopt for over two years at the time we adopted Maddie.  We fostered a Yorkie (too small), a Husky (way, way too much energy), and tried to adopt a Scottie (the foster mother decided to keep him) before my husband found Maddie on Craigslist.

She had been rescued from a kill shelter in Western Colorado and brought to Denver.  She was the smallest of the litter and the last one to be adopted, but when we met her we thought she was precious.

My husband met the woman who rescued her near her car, excited to meet Maddie, who was called Baby then.  As I watched on, he held her cradled to his shoulder and even without meeting her, I knew she was ours.  When Maddie was brought inside, she sniffed around for a while not really interested in me or our cat, took a large drink of water, and proceeded to pee on the carpet before falling asleep next to the arm of the couch.  It was then, with assurance, that we both fell in love with her.

Her first year was difficult.  She refused to walk on a leash and spent most of her first six months stubbornly trying to get her way.  But that was child’s play compared to the variety of health issues she went through, from bronchitis to giardia and because she is a black Labrador and Rottweiler mix, she’s prone to shoulder issues because of so much of her weight is up front.  During that time, we learned that she couldn’t run because she would tear her shoulder muscles to the point she was bedridden for weeks.  It took us a few months to find a routine fit for her.  Mainly taking short walks, several times a day, but even Maddie became bored with the same routine.

Because of the shoulder injuries, we discovered water therapy and acupuncture when she was two and a half, and now she goes swimming at a dog clinic specializing in rehab three times a week and has many dog friends.

Swimming is low-impact exercise and only thirty minutes in the pool will tire her out and keep her happy.

On the days she doesn’t swim, she enjoys walking around the neighborhood and meeting dogs.  She’s also on a specialized diet to keep the weight off her shoulder and hips and because of the amount of exercise she gets, we are hoping she’ll live a long and healthy life.

It may seem as if we spoil Maddie, which we do, we totally do, there is so many things we get in return.  When my husband goes to work, Maddie keeps me company as I write.  I sometimes run ideas by her, but she looks at me with one eyebrow raised (I’m pretty sure she’s expressing her absolute disagreement with my idea) before she sighs and goes back to sleep.

Also, if it wasn’t for Maddie, I wouldn’t be as active as I am, taking longer walks because she has to smell everywhere and meet every dog along the way.  And I use that time to plot books or relax if I’m worried about anything going on in my life, but mainly, I enjoy being outside with my girl.

I never truly understood the responsibility of having a dog until Maddie came into our lives.  But I have to admit, our lives are richer, more relaxed, and genuinely happier because of Maddie.

Beth: Wonderful story about Maddie!

You for Christmas (FREE)

Genre:  Contemporary M/M Romance

BLURB

Hiding his feelings for his best friend has become second nature to Parker Hunt.  Throughout his years of friendship with Jonah Lee, he’d hoped for more, but he’d never been able to tell Jonah how he felt or what he wanted.  When Jonah’s plans fall through for holiday break, Parker is determined to spend their last Christmas together and this time, be brave enough to tell Jonah exactly how he feels.

Jonah Lee has always been in awe of his friend, Parker.  His energy, enthusiasm, and honesty had drawn Jonah to him from the first time they met.  And while he’s always been an open book with Jonah, lately, Parker had been holding something back.  On top of that, Jonah has realized that his feelings for Parker has grown and for the first time in his life, he’s curious about what Parker’s lips would feel like under his and what his definite male body would feel against his.

Will the holidays bring everything both men want, or will they let this opportunity pass them by?

You For Christmas is FREE at these sites:

Amazon

Apple

B&N

Kobo

Google Play

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Valerie writes paranormal and contemporary romances with strong alpha males and brilliant, beautiful heroines. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her wonderfully supportive husband and their funny and wise black lab. She’s addicted to coffee, crime shows, and reading and writing character driven romances.

SOCIAL MEDIA: FACEBOOK ~ TWITTER ~ PINTEREST ~ INSTAGRAM ~ GOODREADS ~ AMAZON

Thanks for stopping by. Please leave Valerie a comment.

Furbaby Friday with Christine Grabowski!


A warm welcome to fellow Wild Rose Press Author  Christine Grabowski. She’s joining us to share memories of her beloved dog, Rylie, and her Young Adult contemporary fantasy, Dickensen Academy.

Christine: Although I’d lived with a couple dogs growing up, Rylie was the first dog I could call my own. (Okay, maybe my husband Rich called her his.) Rylie was a Welsh terrier. We always joked she had dual citizenship because she was born in Canada before she moved to Virginia where we were living.

Rich and I didn’t have children at the time, so she was our only baby, and we spent lots of quality time with her in those early years. We completed training class after training class culminating in agility training. We had doggy birthday parties and visited dog parks. And we were fortunate Old Town Alexandria was extremely dog friendly, so we were able to take her to doggy happy hour at a local bar and trick-or-treating where a town full of costume-clad pooches walked from merchant to merchant gathering dog treats.

Rylie even brought an important family into our lives when she began barking like crazy at our picture window—a glance out showed a man racing in circles trying to catch his pup, so we ran out to help. Well, his fox terrier, Darcy, became Rylie’s best friend, and her family became one of our closest. Eventually Darcy’s human mom became our daughter’s godmother, and Darcy’s human-sister became our goddaughter. When we moved from Virginia, I still clearly remember Darcy staring sadly out the window as if sensing she’d never see Rylie again.

Fast forward many years and Rylie adjusted to life in Washington State. Although she had to drop out of agility, she happily made way for her own human sister and brother and couldn’t be a better best friend to us all. She kept her puppy antics well into her second decade of life—everyone always telling me that our daily three-mile runs kept her young and healthy.

When I began writing four years ago, Rylie was my constant companion, and I realized how special a mature dog could be. When the house grew quiet after my husband left for work and the kids left for school, Rylie would curl up in our favorite chair while I’d write. She literally fell asleep on my keyboard many times.

Last year, Rylie left us just shy of her 16th birthday. Coincidentally (or maybe not, depending on your beliefs), I received my first writing contract four days after her death. To say that was the most emotional week of my life was an understatement. Getting some of the best news of my life on top of some of the worst is something I don’t necessarily wish for anybody. But looking back, maybe it was for the best because shifting gears to become a published author kept me too busy to dwell on my sadness.

I’m happy to say Rylie lives on in Dickensen Academy as Zoey, Autumn’s Welsh terrier, and as the name of her dormitory (O’Reilly). Although many characters are based on real life people, Zoey is the only one based 100% on one individual.

My furbabies are so important to me, and I expect all my future books will feature my dogs. Stay tuned for a future fairy tale retelling featuring a Max and Ruby.

Dickensen Academy by Christine Grabowski

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Fantasy

Dickensen Academy is a young YA contemporary fantasy that bridges the gap between MG and YA. It is about a teen girl named Autumn, who is invited to a fine arts boarding school in the secluded mountains of the Pacific Northwest. However, she soon realizes the faculty is secretly teaching dream telepathy.

Although the premise is considered a paranormal or a fantasy, the focus of the book is as much about Autumn’s relationships with her friends and family and her struggles in school and for independence—something many teens can relate to.

Excerpt:

“I feel like there’s something big we don’t know about. Something those students were protecting. I mean, really, why are we here?”

I thought it was just me who was confused. “Well…the recruiters said we’re creative and focused.”

“Yeah, that’s what Principal Locke said too.”

“And we have the right personality.”

Ben looked up at the sky, sighed then turned toward the forest. “What did he say…something about how it will soon become clear why we’re here, and there’s some ultimate purpose for our creativity?”

“I know. That whole creativity part was a bit bizarre.”

He shrugged. “It seems everyone is going with the flow. But I have so many questions.” Then he touched my arm to stop me, so I turned toward him. “I’m thinking they’re isolating us for some special reason,” he admitted in an embarrassed tone.

I tried not to laugh—he was acting paranoid. But I didn’t know Ben well. Maybe he was joking, trying to freak me out. Or was he hitting on me? The flutter in my chest moved to my stomach. I was already anxious about being away from home and whether or not I could hack the academics. I didn’t need to obsess about anything else. But I still had to know about Ben’s dream.

“So…I also had a dream about Dickensen before I accepted the offer.”

Ben’s head snapped toward me. “You did?”

Look for Christine and Dickensen Academy at:

 Website: 

https://christinegrabowski.com

Book Trailer:  

https://youtu.be/sgjRes7zPLQ

Amazon: 

https://www.amazon.com/dickensen-academy-map-success/dp/B07G71747S

Barnes & Noble (Paperback)  https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/dickensen-academy-christine-grabowski/1129315140?ean=9781509221233

Facebook: http://facebook.com/christinegrabowskiauthor

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/christinegrabo/

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/christinegrabo

Goodreads Profile:   https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18276822.Christine_Grabowski

 Bookbub Profile: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/christine-grabowski

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave Christine a comment.

Furbaby Friday with Kelley Heckart!


A warm welcome to Kelley Heckart. I’m glad to have Kelley here to share her special furbaby and contemporary paranormal romance, Awakening.

Kelley Heckart: Loki

I’ve loved a few dogs in my life, and each one was special. Loki came to me a little late in his life, age seven, unlike my other dogs that I raised from puppies. He also came to me a bit damaged. I knew about him because he belonged to my niece. He was the “problem” and “high maintenance” dog in the family. I didn’t believe it. He was so small and cute. How could he have such a bad reputation?

The first time he stayed with me and my husband he marked almost the entire house. I’m not kidding. I won’t lie, I was ready to send him back to his home. Something happened, though. Despite his “marking” issue, he was a great dog—mellow for a Chihuahua, and he got along with my old chi-weenie, Hercules, now deceased, a dog that hated all other dogs.

So, when my niece asked me to watch Loki again, I agreed. This time, his “marking” issue was better, and the little guy was growing on me. I can’t explain it, but I saw something in him. He fit into our household routine, he seemed happy at our home, and, most importantly, he respected my older dog’s place in the family.

My niece didn’t come and pick Loki up after she returned from her trip. A week passed, and then another. She knew he was in good hands, and I think she was waiting for me to bring him home, but I decided that if she didn’t come get him, it was a sign he was supposed to stay with us. Being a single mother with a full-time job, she really didn’t have time to care for Loki. If you ask her, my niece will probably say I stole him. Ha ha. Seriously though, he needs to be in a house without children and with someone who is home most of the time, which I am.

The longer he stayed with us, the better behaved he became. I’m able to give him the extra attention he requires. All it took was some love, perseverance, and patience to break his “marking” habit.

He had a different name when I officially adopted him, but I wanted to change it to give him a new start. It took me a while to think of a good name. One day, I set the kitchen trash bag by the back door. A couple of hours later, I picked it up to take outside, and there was a tiny chew hole in the bottom. One of my dogs had done it, and I knew it wasn’t my old chi-weenie. That’s how Loki was named after a Norse trickster god. My husband says he also “tricked” me into adopting him.

He’s been with us for four years now, and he’s turned into a great dog. Sure, he’s a little stubborn and very vocal and adamant when it’s time to go for a walk or eat, but he keeps me on a schedule and forces me to exercise.

He’s got some funny quirks.

He’s afraid of Facebook and cell phone notification sounds, and he’s also afraid of Alexa, but a leaf blower or a super loud phone ring doesn’t frighten him.

He doesn’t like to snuggle, but he always must be able to see me. When my husband and I took him on a trip once, Loki freaked out when I got out of the car to use the restroom. He made a sound like a stuck pig. There was a black lab sitting nearby, and he gave Loki the strangest look. My husband quickly shut the car door so as not to attract too much attention.

Loki gets annoyed when I force him to take selfies, which I do all the time.

True to his Chihuahua nature, he is a little neurotic. He especially gets upset when I go off schedule and leave the house at a time that isn’t part of my regular routine.

He hates children, but children love him, and he’s surprisingly tolerant.

Regardless of his weird quirks, I wouldn’t part from him for anything.

Things he loves:

Cheese. He can hear a cheese wrapper being opened behind a closed door.

He loves to lay outside and warm himself in the sun and watch the birds.

He loves to terrorize the chipmunks.

He loves going for walks every morning. Very early, of course. LOL

Dogs enrich our lives in so many ways. They keep us company, give us unconditional love, force us to get up and go for walks, and they entertain us, too. I’m much healthier in mind and body by having a dog by my side. Despite a rough start with Loki, I’m glad I didn’t give up on him.

My latest release, a contemporary paranormal romance, is inspired by my time as a rock-and-roll bassist. The first book is Kate’s story.

Supernatural meets Rock Star in this exciting new series. More than passion ignites when Kate, rock star/scriptwriter, is trapped in a haunted cabin with the hot Scottish actor playing her hero.

Series blurb:

The five young women of Hecate’s Fury are more than rock stars.

They are Shadow-walkers, chosen to help the supernatural world.

There’s just one problem—no one trained them.

Buy links: Kindle: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H1P9242

https://www.kelleyheckart.com/shadowwalkers.html

Excerpt:

Normally, I didn’t eat much in the morning, but the blueberry muffins tempted me. I even found some hot cocoa. Once I’d prepared my breakfast, I sat at the oak table near the kitchen window, chose the seat facing the view, and became entranced by the beautiful forest scene outside. The rising sun cast golden hues across dew-kissed pines that sparkled among the amber oak leaves. The serene atmosphere embraced me, and I closed my eyes, savoring my hot cocoa.

“Bloody hell. Why is the coffee maker empty?”

I flung my eyes open and jumped at the deep male voice, dribbling hot cocoa down my chin. After twisting in my seat, I widened my gaze.

Kane Devlin stood in the kitchen. His tousled brown hair framed his handsome face and curled in perfect, delectable collar-grazing waves. His designer clothes were unwrinkled and also perfect. He looked like he’d showered and dressed for a photo shoot and not just woke up or crawled in after a night of little sleep.

And he was glaring at me. “Did you hear me?”

His slight Scottish burr had taken me aback. Usually he affected an American accent in his movies.

I slowly nodded, very aware I must look like a mess and swiped a napkin over my hot cocoa-streaked chin. “I, uh, what about the coffee maker?”

“I expect coffee in the morning. Britany knows this. My P.A. should know this. That’s you, right?”

“P.A.?”

He leaned on the granite island, his thick muscles straining beneath his long-sleeved shirt. “Are you daft, lass? You are the P.A. Britany sent to fill in for David, right?”

“No.”

“No, you’re not daft or not the P.A.?” One side of his gorgeous mouth twisted into an amused grin.

I hardened my gaze. Okay, hot or not, he was being an ass. “No to both.”

He tilted his head. “Who are you then?”

“Kaitlyn Storm.”

“The author?” He lifted his brows, curiosity lighting his blue-green eyes.

“Yes.” I suddenly wished I had showered and dressed before coming down to the kitchen. Or at least combed my hair.

His keen, assessing gaze roamed my face and body. “Hmm. You look different from your picture.”

Heat crept up my cheeks, and I wanted to crawl under the table. Yeah, I just rolled out of bed.

“Old photo,” I mumbled.

He slanted his head, brow furrowed. “You are much too pretty to be a writer, and that picture doesn’t do you justice.”

My cheeks grew even hotter.

He pointed to the coffee maker. “So, why is it empty?”

I frowned. “Because I don’t drink coffee.”

Studying the coffee maker, he scratched his stubbly chin. “Well, maybe you know how this thing works.”

“It can’t be that difficult.” I pushed my chair back, stood, brushed past him, retrieved a measuring cup and then filled the coffee maker reservoir with water. Ignoring his presence as best I could, I found the coffee and filters in one of the pantries.

From behind me, he said, “You should be a P.A.” His words were tinged with mirth.

“And you should try not to be such an ass.” I turned and pursed my lips.

Amused laughter rumbled from him. “I like you, Katie.”

I bristled. No one ever called me that. In fact I hated that nickname, but it did sound pleasing the way Kane said it with his slight Scottish accent.

 

Kelley Heckart

Otherworldly tales steeped in myth, magic & romance.

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Multi-published author Kelley Heckart lives in Arizona with her musician husband, dog, and a number of backyard “pets.” Her stories reflect her passion for ancient and medieval time periods, storytelling and the supernatural. Inspired by the ancient Celts, her tales are filled with fierce warriors, bold women, otherworldly creatures, magic, and romance. When not writing, she works as a freelance editor, practices target archery, and writes and records music with her husband. She can be found online at http://www.kelleyheckart.com/

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