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Coming May 1, 2015 - Saving Marilee by Annette K. Larsen
Saving Marilee by Annette K. Larsen
Marriage wasn’t bliss—not for Marilee. Instead of finding contentment with the handsome son of a sovereign duke, she found betrayal and neglect. And fear. A fear that finally lifts when her husband dies, freeing her from his domineering hand. But freedom alone can't give her peace, and she must battle to regain her love for life, rebuild her happiness, and reclaim the ability to trust. When her charming neighbor intrudes on her quiet life, offering his friendship (and a dog, of all things), she must determine whether his interest is genuine, whether he is a friend or foe, and whether he deserves the fragile bit of trust she has managed to scrape together.
I was born in Utah, part of a crazy, fun family of nine. I grew up in Flagstaff, AZ and St. Louis, MO before striking out on my own college adventure in Virginia. I decided to try my hand at writing novels after I was married and living in Idaho. I write clean romance because it’s my favorite genre, but often difficult to find.
I have Charlotte Brontë to thank for the courage to write novels. After being bombarded with assigned reading about women who justified abandoning either their families or their principles in the name of love, I had the great fortune of reading Jane Eyre. And that was it: finally, a heroine who understood that being moral and making the right choice was hard, and sometimes it hurt, but it was still worth it. After rereading it several years later, I realized that if I wanted more books to exist with the kinds of heroines I admired, then I might as well write a few myself. My books are about women who face hard choices, who face pain and rejection and often have to face the reality of sacrificing what they want for what is right. The consequences are often difficult or unpleasant, but in the end, doing what’s right will always be worth it.
I believe there is no substitute for good writing or good chocolate. Fortunately, one often leads to the other.
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Can true love shine through the darkest storm?
The storm of the century raged through the northeast, causing destruction and despair, millions were left without power and hope. Weeks later, countless people were still devastated by the destruction of Hurricane Sandy, Emma Riley among them.
Determined she didn’t need the help of a man, Emma was convinced that she could brave the aftermath of the storm on her own. That is, until Jake came into her life.
After having suffered heartbreak and embarrassment, Jake Mack, a utility foreman, volunteered to travel north from small town, Georgia to assist with the aftermath of the storm. Jake was decidedly done with women. But he didn’t count on meeting Emma or falling in love so quickly. Can he trust this woman or will his past get in the way and ruin the relationship with the one woman he truly loves?
Excerpt from The Calm After the Storm:
Jake and his crew had now been in the suburbs of New York for a few days. His first thought upon entering this area was his surprise at the devastation. Sure, he had heard about the destruction on the news and had seen footage of the aftermath of Sandy, but it still hadn’t prepared him for the actual sight of Sandy’s rage. Telephone poles were down, trees were snapped in two, and houses were completed destroyed by the storm. Seeing all the destruction only strengthened Jake’s resolve that it had been the right thing to come. He felt proud to be able to help out and be a part of the solution to the horrible aftermath of this disaster.
As the day was wrapping up. Jake and Chris met up with some of their crew in the next town to finish one more area before calling it quits. The chill in the air was something that Jake had prepared for, but was not accustomed to. Clutching the new flannel he had purchased right before his trip, he put it on over his thermal shirt. Thankful for his thermos filled with hot coffee, Jake grabbed it but quickly tossed it aside.
“Come on, Chris! I asked you to stop drinking my coffee. Now there’s none left,” he said as he shook his head, irritated at his friend.
Chris looked up at his boss sheepishly. “Sorry, man. I didn’t sleep well last night. I needed some caffeine.”
“Well, that makes two of us.”
They rode until they approached the utility pole that needed attention. Jake and Chris were among the first to arrive and got busy setting up for the job. Within minutes, the rest of the assigned crew trickled in. The workers were now familiar with the details and routine of this job, so for the most part they worked in silence, focused on getting this last job done so that they could grab some dinner and hit the sheets. It was cold and dark, the night chill settling in upon them. Jake supervised and helped his crew perform their individual duties as quickly as possible. As they were just about wrapping things up, Jake headed over to Steve, one of the older guys directing traffic. He looked frail and tired.
“Hey, Steve. I got this. Why don’t you call it a night, huh? We’ll meet you at the hotel for some dinner.”
“Nah, Jake, we’re almost done here. I’m good,” Steve said as he looked up at Jake with glaring dark circles under his eyes.
“Steve, go. I’m serious. Get in a hot shower and we’ll meet up for dinner. Boss’ orders. Now go and take Andy with you,” Jake gestured toward another man on the crew who looked like he was ready for bed.
Shrugging his shoulders, Steve made his way to one of the smaller utility trucks, calling for his co-worker to join him. Jake took over the responsibility of directing traffic, slowing people down and stopping cars when necessary. Yawning, he waved a small SUV along, noticing that the approaching driver was slowing down, much more than necessary. Jake squinted his eyes to get a better look. The car came to a stop when Jake stepped up to it and its window rolled down. Looking back at Jake was a woman who appeared pretty, even in the diminished light. Wait, scratch that—she was stunning, with long, wavy hair and piercing eyes. His heart faltered just a bit.
“Hi. I wanted to thank you guys for all of the hard work that you’ve been doing. We really appreciate you guys coming up here. I think I speak for everyone,” she said as she smiled widely. Her smile hitched his breath ever so slightly. Jake smiled back. This was certainly a change. Since he had been in this area, some people waved, some people smiled, others remained with their eyes straight ahead, but nobody had yet offered any thanks verbally. So different from the Southern hospitality way of life where he grew up, Jake mused.
Here it was different, the pace of life was much faster. People always seemed to be in a rush, and they minded their own business for the most part. Sure, being so close to the big city must be nice and the landscape was quite beautiful at times, but he didn’t think this lifestyle was something he could ever get used to. It seemed too stressful, too impersonal. He would be glad to be back home when his job was finished.
The woman leaned over and offered Jake a box of donuts, disposable coffee cups, and a box of hot coffee. Jake was impressed.
“Thank you, that was very thoughtful!” Jake gushed, thrilled at the idea of hot coffee. He thought he felt warmth spread across his cheeks despite the chill in the air.
The woman stared back and smiled at Jake for a minute and then set her eyes on the road ahead. She waved as she pulled away.
“Wait!” Jake called out. “Wait, what was your name?” But the words were lost. The mysterious woman with the coffee and donuts was long gone.
“Guys!” he called out as his crew worked on cleaning up for the night. “Guys! Our guardian angel just appeared, and she brought coffee!”
The coffee and donuts were gladly received, but the idea that someone would go out of their way to show a random act of kindness truly touched Jake. He felt the warm liquid slide down his throat and knew that he would always remember the woman’s thoughtfulness. Who was he kidding? That woman’s beautiful face was what he would most remember. He just wished that he had gotten her name.
Author Mya O'Malley Mya O’Malley was born and raised in the suburbs of New York City, where she currently lives with her husband, daughter and three step-daughters. The family also consists of two boxers, named Destiny and Dolce, and a ragdoll cat named Colby. Mya earned an undergraduate degree in special education and a graduate degree in reading and literacy. She works as a special education teacher and enjoys making a difference in the lives of her students.
Mya’s passion is writing; she has been creating stories and poetry since she was a child. She spends her free time reading just about anything she can get her hands on. She is a romantic at heart and loves to create stories with unforgettable characters. Mya likes to travel and has visited several Caribbean Islands, Mexico, and Costa Rica. She is currently working on her sixth novel.
Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by readinglight.com. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.
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The image of a woman wearing a sari conjures up both the remarkable beauty of women and the exquisite artistry of textile and embroidery. The sari is a garment created from a single piece of fabric five to nine yards. Its ingenious design allows for wrapping around a woman’s body in different ways. This allows for a variety of effects: stunning traditional gown, alluring eveningwear, or simple utilitarian work attire.
It is one thing to prepare food for ourselves because we need to eat. It’s mealtime, we’re hungry, what do we have in the cupboard? But it is a whole different thing to cook a special dish or an entire feast because we want to shower someone we love with a caring gesture.
Rihaan stepped into the tiny kitchen to find it dwarfed by his lanky frame. Folding wiry arms across his chest, he leaned gingerly against the wall and watched as she went about her task in a haphazard fashion. Her attempts at putting on a show of neatness and method were failing hopelessly.
It's like I can't describe it- but The Accidental Wife had me HOOKED! I loved how Naina and Rihaan slowly fell for each other, how things kept happening thatnmept them from being together, it was so realistic, how they let their pride get in the way of things, how they decided to stick to their stubborn ideals despite the obvious love and desire they were feeling! . . . All I can say is- for an insight into Indian Society- READ THIS!
Inside it, she found some clothes just like the oversized ones hanging in the closet. They were of no interest to her. What caught her eye was a beautiful silk sari, tie-dyed in a rainbow of colors with decorated elephants marching along the borders and tiny shiny mirrors that caught the light and sparkled like diamonds. She flung it around her neck like a shawl and felt deeply comforted by the strong fragrance of sandalwood.
He soon found himself engaged in the activity of browsing through the huge databanks of boys and girls seeking potential life partners. He was shocked at the variety he saw and equally surprised at the way they presented themselves, especially how particular they were about the kind of mate they wanted. It was just as Rudy had described—a huge marriage market.
Finally after having amused himself for a few hours, Rihaan fell asleep thinking there might just be a solution to all his problems.
The Accidental Wife had me hooked from the start. I love reading about different cultures and this is a perfect example of it. The depth of the characters and how real they came across had me wanting more. I couldn’t put it down.
Marriage is a sacred relationship. It is not just the meeting of two individuals but of two souls. Its purpose is for the continuation of family and to practice one’s Dharma. There is no concept of divorce. Once married, a couple is wedded for life. Divorce is a modern concept introduced through the Hindu Marriage Act of India.
Dr. Rihaan Mehta is a brilliant young neurosurgeon who has no inclination for love or marriage. According to him wives and girlfriends are annoying accessories that one can do without. But when his mother dangles the sword over his head in classic Bollywood style, he succumbs, and sets out in search of a bride who would fit his 'requirements'. But can Rihaan deal with what he gets instead?
Simi K. Rao was born and grew up in both northern and southern India before relocating to the U.S., where she has lived for several years. Inconvenient Relations is her first published novel.
The inspiration for this book, and her other projects, comes from her own experience with cross-cultural traditions, lifestyles and familial relationships, as well as stories and anecdotes collected from friends, family and acquaintances.
Rao enjoys exploring the dynamics of contemporary American culture blended with Indian customs and heritage to reflect the challenges and opportunities many Indian-American women face in real life.
Much of Rao's down time is devoted to creative pursuits, including writing fiction, poetry and photography. She is an avid traveler and has visited many locations around the world. A practicing physician, Rao lives in Denver with her family.
After a life filled with destruction of others and himself, and his body ravaged by disease, there's only one thing left for Javier Calero to do. Leave a legacy that will finally bring meaning to his life—and to the death of an American president more than fifty years ago.
The CEO of a green energy company is murdered behind his million-dollar estate, his neck nearly severed in two. Recruited to aid the widow and find a savage killer, Booker finds himself in the middle of a family train wreck.
Days later, thrust into the crossfire of a deadly sniper, Booker eludes sure death with the uncanny arrival of a young woman who only wants to save her father from harm. But she can't do it without Booker's help.
Joining forces with a Latin spitfire, Booker and his new sidekick, Maggie, embark on a twenty-four-hour quest to hunt down a killer determined to make an indelible mark on history—just like the one that struck down John F. Kennedy a half-century earlier, which launched a cascade of assassination investigations and theories.
BOOKER - Hate City weaves a historic tale of thrills and suspense, examining the justifications of the unjustifiable.
Check out the other books in the series Booker: Streets of Mayhem (Booker #1)
On a cool October afternoon, the majestic blue sky above Dallas is polluted with swells of gray smoke, carrying shattered memories of fifteen people, mostly children, who've just been killed by an explosion on a bus.
A white supremacist group claims responsibility, opening old wounds, turning neighbor against neighbor--fracturing the community.
A Southeast Dallas native, Booker T. Adams couldn't be more invested in the city…in the people he'd served for the last seven years as a beat cop for the Dallas Police Department. Without warning, it becomes personal for Booker on so many levels. And as panic grips the city, he must decide how much he's willing to sacrifice to end the chaos.
With his career called into question and his family in the crosshairs of one terrorist act after another, Booker invests every fiber of his being to protect a broken community, and to stop the brutal, senseless slayings.
If he fails, terrorism will reign in the city of Dallas.
Courtney Johnson brings the house down in the heart of the vibrant Dallas Arts District. Later, shrills pierce the hallways of Wyle Theater when Courtney, a budding Broadway musical star, is found dead, a single bullet to the head.
Driven to find the killer before panic tears apart the arts community and all those who support it, private investigator Booker T. Adams discovers evidence of a professional hit, then uncovers a lovers ' triangle that takes him all the way to the mean streets of Boston.
And then it happens again. Another performer killed, someone Booker had met. Rocked by the shocking murders, performers and patrons alike fear that a serial killer is on the loose, and no one knows when and or where another dead body will show up.
But professional obligations quickly morph into personal vendettas. Running against an unforgiving clock, Booker is forced to solicit the help of a crime boss, The Shark.
With his life threatened at almost every turn, and his heart being put through a meat grinder, Booker taps into every resource at his disposal to stop more than just a killer.
But at what price?
Full of unforgettable characters, bone-chilling suspense and stunning thrills, BOOKER - Tap That is a wild ride that will test even the most fervent reader's quest for a luminous reading experience.
A veteran of the corporate wars, former journalist, and true studier of human and social behavior, best-selling author John W. Mefford has been writing novels since he first entered the work force twenty-five years ago, although he never put words on paper until late 2009.
John writes novels full of intrigue, suspense, and thrills, but they also evoke an emotional connection with the characters.
When he’s not writing, he chases three kids around, slaves away in the yard, reads, takes in as many sports as time allows, watches all sorts of movies, and continues to make mental notes of people and societies across the land.
John lives in Frisco, Texas with his beautiful wife, three opinionated kids, and a feisty fat cat who rules the world.
Creeping out of their sleepy little village on an idyllic summer morning, all Mort and his best friend Nihlus wanted to do was play games of heroes and villains, clashing swords in imaginary worlds fraught with danger. Though on this fateful morning, their play is interrupted when they see smoke on the horizon.
When the men of Hamlet vanish without a trace in the wake of an unlikely attack, those who remain are left with far more questions than answers. As the hours turn to days a shadow of fear creeps over their village and the boys realise that someone has to act, someone has to do something - that they must answer the call.
Accompanied by their young friend Tesa, and the allies they make along the way, the pair embark upon a dangerous journey that takes them beneath the perilous canopy of Goldleaf Forest and beyond - quickly realising that there is a larger world beyond their quiet village and there are far worse monsters out there than anything their vivid imaginations can conjure.
On a quest for answers, to find their missing loved ones, and to discover their place in the world - Mort Nihlus and Tesa learn that danger must be met with determination, fear with hope and loss with love.
A tale of friendship and bravery in the face of adversity. The discovery that no matter how afraid you are, if you persevere and fight onwards - ultimately Courage Comes.
Our Book Review
A book for young readers, full of weird and wonderful creatures that live and survive in the woods that our young adventurers meet on their quest. The children spend must of their days playing heroes and villains in their imaginary world and they find that they soon have to use these skills to survive when their village is attacked and all the men have vanished. They then have to leave the village and try to find the menfolk.
The authors has great imagination, the creatures and habitat they live in are extraordinary. Along with learning the survival skills they also learn about the balance of nature and how one small change can upset the whole system.
The children are pushed to their limits and their true nature shines through as they find their true worth to each other.
An intriguing read full of imagination and friendship and a good read .
About the Author
Daniel Thomas McDonald was born in Hertfordshire, England, to Barbara and Ian McDonald August 17th 1988. He was home-educated throughout his childhood, which he says played a major part in his journey to becoming an author, Daniel spent much of his youth writing poetry and short-stories to entertain himself and those around him. Daniel attended a local college studying business before undertaking several years at university. He chose not to complete his higher education and instead began working as a rope access technician (abseiler) for a successful abseiling company based in London. He 'jumped' off some of the country's most iconic buildings; reaching dizzying heights of almost thirty-storeys, before he went on to become the company's operations manager. Daniel eventually terminated this role in order to pursue greater fulfilment elsewhere. He travelled and volunteered for six months before returning home to seek work. During this time he operated several small blogs, one regarding travelling and another talking of his experiences as a job-seeker. Through blogging Daniel rediscovered his love for writing and he made a decision to pursue it as a career. Releasing his first novel, Courage Comes, in November of 2014.
Drew Nelson did not plan to fall in love that morning!
He did not plan to talk with anyone. He did not plan to make a new friend. He resisted all of Amy’s attempts to draw him out− at the hotel, at the airport, on the airplane− giving hurried responses and burying his face in a pile of papers.
But when the flight attendant offered coffee, and a muscle in Amy’s back twitched as she reached for it, and the cup tipped, and the hot liquid puddled in Drew’s lap, then they began to talk!
Earlier in the year, each had lost a spouse of over thirty years. Drew’s wife had died of a brain tumor, Amy’s husband when his small airplane nose-dived to earth, the engine at full throttle − an accident, it was ruled. They live in the same city. Both have grandchildren. They are about the same age. Consciously, or not, they both are looking to love again.
But relationships do not exist in vacuums. Drew is wealthy, and Amy is middle class. Amy is “new” in town – she and her husband moved to Charleston twenty-five years ago – while Drew’s family has lived there for three centuries. Drew lives below Broad, a code word for high society, old families, power, and money. Amy’s home is across the river.
Class warfare may be less violent than it was in the past, but when Drew invites Amy to the St Cecelia Ball, battle lines are drawn.
In a city in which ancestry is important, the ball’s membership is passed from father to son, and only those from the oldest families are members.
Family, friends, co-workers all weigh in on their relationship and choose sides. Allies are found in unexpected places. Opposition comes from among those who were thought to be friends. Though they are gone, even their spouses − through things they have done and things they have said − wield influence in the conflict that follows.
Is Drew is one of them, the rich snobs who despise Amy? Does he truly love her?
Does Amy care for Drew? Can she trust him, or is he simply using her?
As each questions the other’s motives, their feelings for each other are tested.
Do Drew and Amy truly want to fall in love again?
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