Category Archives: Fiction

Double Reviews for New Adult Romance!

Great news! Two new reviews popped up this week for my new adult romance story, The Missing Piece. Yay! 🙂

-from Amy Shannon’s Bookshelf Reviews’ blog

 

 

 

Likeable story

It’s a sweet novella about Alyssa, who with the help of Justin, tried to figure out what happened the night before.

The story was well written, and probably would have been better as a novel, than a novella, but the plot and details that are needed to make a great novella is here. It takes a lot of talent to write a thorough novella, and Lavender definitely has that writing talent. The story was sweet, and likable, and engaged the reader on the journey that Alyssa was forced to take.

-from Feathered Quill Book Reviews

Can one mistake cause someone to find love and change their entire life? Author Marie Lavender writes about that possibility in her new romance The Missing Piece.

The Missing Piece is a short story about good-girl Alyssa Masters. One morning Alyssa wakes up on her college fraternity’s lawn with a massive headache and a spotty memory, and instantly panics. Parties aren’t her scene, she’s a recluse and doesn’t drink. She’s a good student and doesn’t do anything that involves too much risk, until last night, apparently.

As Alyssa struggles to take in her surroundings and figure out what day it is, a young man named Justin helps her to put some of the pieces together. She finds that she did, in fact, attend the frat party and clearly drank, but much of what happened afterward is still a mystery. All she knows is what Justin has told her – that she had spent time with a fraternity member named Brendan and eventually followed him upstairs after doing some jello shots. In an instant frenzy, she thinks of the worst possible outcomes, only to be assured by Justin that Brendan is a good guy. He vows to help her figure out the pieces of her missing memory, but they could very well find that they were each other’s missing piece all along.

The Missing Piece was a quick and fun read, and I enjoyed meeting Alyssa and the other characters. Given the constraints of the short story format – this is a 30-page story – it’s difficult for the author to “flesh out” the characters and really develop them. I would have loved to see the characters be more deeply developed, and I would have loved to be more involved in this story. I really did want to keep reading more, as the style of writing was easy to follow and intriguing. I am hoping for a sequel to this short story, as I would like to know how the romance between characters develops and if Alyssa comes to change her good-girl ways or finds someone who will accept her for everything she is and always was.

Quill says: The Missing Piece is a mysterious and romantic read that readers will find themselves wanting more of and definitely looking for other stories by this author.

Thank you, Amy and Diana, for your kind words! 😀

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Filed under Books, Contemporary, Event, Fiction, New Adult, Readers, Reviews, Romance, short stories, Stories, Writing

Special Feature: What Does Romance Mean to Me? by Debbie White

Hi, readers! I am beyond pleased to announce a very special post today on ILRB. Recently, I asked both authors and romance readers to come to me with their responses to this big question: “What Does Romance Mean to Me?” I was genuinely interested in what made us all tick, what continued to draw us to the genre. Why do we love “love” so much? I wanted to dig deep into the heart of each person. And I’ve gotten some incredible feedback. Today is next post in this series.

So, without further ado, let’s turn the mic over to author Debbie White, who has a few things to say about the question at hand.

When I was asked if I’d like to participate in Marie’s theme of what romance meant to me, I was hoping I could truly make it work with my schedule. After all, I am a romance writer. As I sat and contemplated with my hands positioned on the keyboard ready to type away, I realized that romance is more about the journey for me than an actual moment or incident. I’ll explain.

Just as in my romance books, the couple doesn’t start off being romantic. They build up to it.  They meet, they talk, they gather information that leads them to their next step in the romantic dance.

Romance, for me, is the same way. We just celebrated our 42nd wedding anniversary. That’s a big deal, especially in today’s throw-away world. It hasn’t always been easy. Oh, heck no. We got married young and so financial worries were always front and center. Back then, romance was probably kissing and well…you know the other stuff young people do. Then we had a family and life got pretty busy. After taking care of babies all day, exhausted and often falling into bed with my clothes on, romance was the last thing on my mind. As the kids got older, we seemed to be even busier if that was possible. Often it was while lying in bed with our eyes shut, resting from the day’s work, that we’d snuggle and talk.

During those years, romance was probably more about celebrating anniversaries with a nice dinner out.

Then we fast forward to our soon to be retired years. We’re empty nesters now and have a few more pennies to our name. We still find time to be romantic – we have more free time, that’s for sure. But for me, romance is about remembering me with a thoughtful gesture or an unexpected bouquet of flowers or taking me out to dinner at the spur of the moment – no special day to celebrate, just celebrating each other. Or when he tries his hand at cooking dinner and even sets the table with candles and flowers, or when he surprises me with a thoughtful gift – just out of the blue. These are the romantic moments that make up our journey and what ultimately romance means to me.

And the two things we’ve done from the very beginning of our life together have been to start the day with a kiss and words of wishes for a great day, and end the day with a kiss and I love you. It’s worked for 42 years and no matter how angry, upset or tired we are, we always make sure we say and do this little ritual. Even at four in the morning when he’s leaving for his long commute to the city, he doesn’t leave the bedroom before kissing me and telling me he loves me. Sometimes my reply is a mumble, but I always let him hear those words from me before he starts his day.

Romance can be different things to different people, but for me, it’s the regular and mutual showing of appreciation and caring every day and not just on special days.

Very true! You made some great points there. Oh, and Happy Anniversary! 🙂
Thanks for stopping by with your heartwarming guest post, Debbie! Lovely to have you here! ♥
Guest Bio

Debbie currently lives in northern California where the jagged coast meets rolling hills dotted with vineyards. When she’s not writing the next best-selling romance novel, she’s spending time with her family, traveling, wine tasting and anything to do with the outdoors.

Wait, we’re not quite finished!

So, I put the question to you as a reader today as well. What does the word ‘romance’ really mean for you? Is ‘romance’ a driving force in your life? How have your beliefs about romantic relationships informed your own relationships? Perhaps seeing other couples (parents or friends) were some kind of influence. By reading romance novels, does that help to reaffirm things for you?

 

If you’d like to participate in this special feature, please contact me at marieannlavender@gmail.com and I’ll schedule a spot for you. As you can tell from the schedule on the right hand side of the page, we’re getting booked fast, but don’t hesitate to join in! You do not need to be a writer or author. We want to hear from anyone. We’d love to get your take on how you feel about romance, and why you keep reading our books! ♥♥♥ 

 

Thanks again, Debbie, for giving us your take on what romance itself has come to mean to you. Beautiful! 😀

Readers, stay tuned for our next special feature on this topic when author Lashanta Charles visits us on April 27th! Yay! 🙂

We’ll have other posts before then, though.

Have a great week, everyone!

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Filed under Authors, Blogging, Books, Event, Fiction, Guest Writer, Love, Message, Readers, Romance

New Release Feature: The Depth of the Spirit by Linda Lee Williams, plus giveaway!

I am pleased to announce a great book release by Linda Lee Williams, an author I met during my journey! Her contemporary inspirational romance, The Depth of the Spirit, officially released in late January! Yay! That’s awesome! :) Congrats on your new release!:)

When a new book comes out, it’s always an exciting time for an author!

Linda is giving us a look at her inspirational romance, The Depth of the Spirit, today.

Nice cover!

This is the blurb for The Depth of the Spirit:

When an accident leaves Thomas crippled and in a wheelchair, he resigns himself to life as a bachelor—not an easy thing for a young man to accept.  Then fate drops Margot in his lap.  Margot understands the frustrations and challenges of Thomas’ disability.  She knows the pain of loss.  Has serendipity brought Thomas and Margot together?  Or has his dead friend’s prophecy come true?  Only Kayla knows for sure…

And here is an excerpt from The Depth of the Spirit to tease you with.

Midweek, I’m mired in policy renewals and quotes.  My mother quit her job as an X-ray technician to care for me.  Now, she works as my assistant.  The phone in the office den rings, and a man asks for Joyce.  “For you, Mom,” I say.  She turns from the file cabinet and picks up on her extension.  I smile as she schmoozes with the client.  She’s a natural.

While she’s talking, my cell sings out a Coldplay number.  I swallow.  Holy crap.  Margot.  Did her truck break down again?

“Hi, Margot.  Everything okay?”

“I’ve been thinking about it, and I’ve decided we should definitely be friends.”

“Hmm.  In that case, I have a favor to ask of you.”

“Really?  Anything.  What can I do?”

A nectar feeder hangs under the eave outside the window.  Trilling, a male hummingbird flies in.  He hovers, sips, and flashes his magenta throat.  I draw in a breath.  “Will you go to a graduation party with me a week from Saturday?  If you’re not working, I mean…”

“I’d love to!  Is the graduate a relative?”

“Sort of.  My best friend’s kid sister.”

“Dustin?” Margot says.

I’m shocked she remembers—shocked and pleased.  “Yeah.  You can meet him at the party.  He’s an okay guy.  Better than okay, actually.  You’ll like him.”

“If he’s your best friend, I’m sure I will.”

I relish the sound of her voice, the thought of seeing her, even if I am essentially fixing her up with Dustin.  Lots of girls crushed on him in high school, but his heart belonged to Kayla, and it still does.  Maybe Margot can change that.  Although regret ripples through me at the prospect, I’m doing the right thing.  I have a chance to honor Kayla’s last request, whether I imagined her visitation or not.  She would want Dustin to be happy again.

My mom ends her call.  I swivel away from my tabletop desk and out into the foyer.  “So, can I pick you up at one, Margot?”

“Sure.  Why not?”  I hear the teasing smile in her voice.

“Hey, that’s my line…”

She laughs.  “Let’s get together before then.  Are you free Friday evening?  We could meet for dinner somewhere?”

Rat-a-tat-tat goes my heart.  I glance behind me, but my mom is typing at the computer.  “Uh…yeah, that would be great.  What did you have in mind?”

“Chili’s again?  I think we should make it our place.”

Our place?  There isn’t an us, is there?

“Okay,” I say.  “What time?”

“Five?  That way, we can beat the rush.”

“Fine with me.  I’ll see you then.”  I mumble goodbye before she can renege.  Part of me is elated, the other part numb.  Margot asked me out on a date.

What people are saying about this book:

“This is a beautiful story. The series title is a perfect description for the feelings in this story. You do not need to read the first one at all to understand what’s going on, but my advice is to read it just because it’s another amazing story by Linda.

It’s such a lovely, sweet story! I really enjoyed reading it. If you like feel-good stories, don’t pass this up. I loved it!

Purchase Links:

Universal Amazon link:  https://bookgoodies.com/a/B01N27T4T2

Wow! Love the tension here. ♥♥♥ It looks like quite a story!😉

Thank you for telling us about your book, Linda! I know I can’t wait to read this romance! 🙂

 

Readers, don’t forget to pick up a copy of this awesome book!

You can take a look at book one in the Faith, Hope & Love Series too!

Oh, it almost skipped my mind. Drum roll please…*** This wonderful author has a great deal for you today. Just head on over to the Amazon Kindle purchase page for this new release! The Depth of the Spirit is free today through Saturday! Who doesn’t love free? ***

So, check out this great romance novel! ♥

Author Bio

Linda Lee Williams lives in Denver, Colorado, with her husband, Tim, and their sweet dog, Bart.  Over the years, she’s taught creative writing classes, hosted a writers’ group, and written a variety of contemporary romances with a paranormal twist.

Author Links

Website:  http://www.lindaleewilliams.com

Blog:  http://indielindy.blogspot.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/author.linda.lee.williams

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/williamslindal

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Linda-Lee-Williams/e/B00CB1K7SG/

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7123006.Linda_Lee_Williams

Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/lindaleewilliam/my-novels

Google+:  https://plus.google.com/117461809421118231313

eNovel Authors At Work:  http://www.enovelauthorsatwork.com/linda-lee-williams/

 

Thanks again, Linda! We hope to see you back on ILRB sometime. 

Happy reading, everyone!🙂

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Filed under Authors, Book Release, Books, Contemporary, Event, Faith, Fiction, Hope, inspirational romance, Love, new release, Readers, Romance, Writing

A Short But Sweet 5 Stars!

Awesome news! I just stumbled across a great review for one of my books on Amazon. On March 20th, Azia had some wonderful things to say about short contemporary romance, Second Chance Heart:

“A great short Romance story. I really enjoyed reading this one. Looking forward to reading many more by this author! :)”

Wow! Thanks, Azia! Hope to hear from you again! ♥♥♥

Readers, here are some teasers from SCH to give you a peek…

Purchase Links:

Amazon Universal link: http://bookgoodies.com/a/B01593TDO6

myBook.to/SecondChanceHeart

myBook.to/SCH

Smashwords:  https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/576453

Barnes & Noble:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/second-chance-heart-marie-lavender/1122651302

Kobo:  https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/second-chance-heart

And here is the trailer…

I hope you all get a chance to check out this book! Get it a great sale price of 99 cents! 😉

Thank you again, Azia, for your kind words! 🙂

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Filed under Authors, Books, Contemporary, Event, Fiction, Marie Lavender, Readers, Reviews, Romance, short stories, Stories, Writing

Radio Interview!

For our lovers of paranormal romance, you’ve gotta check this out…

Later today, I’ll be chatting with awesome author team and radio hosts of the Haunted Nights Live! show, Tamara Thorne and Alistair Cross. This radio show is quite popular, and the Thorne & Cross team has seen some very famous authors on there. Check out the list of past guests here.

Check us out at 8PM EST to get some sneak peeks of two books I have coming out later this year, a futuristic paranormal romance/urban fantasy, Blood Instincts, book two of the Blood at First Sight Series, and Awakening, a paranormal romantic thriller collection.

Plus, for those who have a fascination with the supernatural, we’ll be talking about that too. 😉

So stop by tonight! You can call in with questions or sit back and listen in. I’m not sure if the interview will be posted right away on the site, but you should be able to hear it as it airs.

Here is the official link: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/authorsontheairradio2/2017/04/07/marie-lavender-joins-thorne-cross-haunted-nights-live

Follow the Haunted Nights Live! duo on their Facebook page here, or check out their Twitter handle and blog.

As always, thanks so much for being great readers on the I Love Romance Blog! ♥♥♥

Happy reading, and have a wonderful day! 🙂

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Filed under Authors, Books, coming soon, Event, Fiction, Interview, Paranormal/Urban Fantasy, Radio, Readers, Romance, Thriller/Suspense, Writing

Special Feature: What Does Romance Mean to Me? by Isobelle Cate

Hi, readers! I am beyond pleased to announce a very special post today on ILRB. Recently, I asked both authors and romance readers to come to me with their responses to this big question: “What Does Romance Mean to Me?” I was genuinely interested in what made us all tick, what continued to draw us to the genre. Why do we love “love” so much? I wanted to dig deep into the heart of each person. And I’ve gotten some incredible feedback. Today is our second post in this series.

So, without further ado, let’s turn the mic over to author Isobelle Cate, who has a few things to say about the question at hand.

Romance can come in many forms. For many romance authors, romance might be equivalent to lust. It is after all, the first stage of getting to know each other in books. The words that flow from pens or computers are aimed at titillating the reader, coaxing a basic need to be swept away by their imaginations of being made loved to by an alpha male.

Is romance erotica? There is only so much a writer can do when incorporating sex in every chapter of a book. The dictum ‘less is more’ may come to the fore to keep a reader’s attention. There should also be a story that draws the reader in to want to turn the page. It may be good for the first book of a series or even a standalone. But if the basic writing formula is not tweaked or – heaven forbid – becomes predictable with the same words and almost similar descriptions of previous works, at the very least your possible fan will just close the book or tap on their kindle to find another book to read. And your novel will be relegated to their own ‘slush’ pile of forgettable books, never to be seen again.

 

Is sweetness and light ‘romance’? Probably to some; but definitely not by a long stretch. Readers might call it cute. Others can consider it ‘saccharine enough to develop diabetes just by reading the book. Is romance a knight in shining armor or a shiny Harley or Ducati, sweeping a damsel in distress to safety? Not really. Damsels in stories nowadays are strong women who do not scream (think Janet Leigh in Psycho) at the first sight of the big bad handsome antagonist. Damsels are kick-ass women who have the wherewithal to put the opposition down. She becomes a partner of the alpha protagonist and saves the day.

Then, what is romance? To me romance is about souls and hearts. It’s where two souls know that their hearts will meet. It’s when two hearts know that whatever the odds, they will come out of it as better individuals.

Even if the end game is the end of the relationship.

A sucker for pain? No, not really. But romance isn’t happily ever after all the time, is it? It’s the journey of figuratively a thousand deaths, souls forged in fire, tempered in strength, and knowing in the end that either two people were meant to be or it just isn’t the right time. Maybe soon…

Romance squeezes the hearts that keep coming back to be burned in love’s furnace. Romance is that moment when one feels hollow when the other heart isn’t around. Heck, it is also missing that heart even when s/he’s around just because they can’t get enough of each other. Romance is when hearts say what mouths can’t because there is this fear of being rejected. So the hearts dance around the flame, tasting it, being singed by it, until both are willingly consumed as an offering. Romance is what so many songs’ lyrics say – sacrifice.

Still romance? Yes. But this time, romance has been transformed into love.

Wow! You made some great points there.
Thanks for stopping by with your fascinating guest post, Isobelle! Lovely to have you here! ♥
Guest Bio

Isobelle Cate is a woman who wears different masks.  Mother-writer, wife-professional, scholar-novelist.  Currently living in Manchester, she has been drawn to the little known, the secret stories, about the people and the nations:  the English, the Irish, the Scots, the Welsh, and those who are now part of these nations whatever their origins.  Her vision and passion are fuelled by her interest and background in history and paradoxically, shaped by growing up in a clan steeped in lore, loyalty, and legend. Isobelle is intrigued by forces that simmer beneath the surface of these cultures, the hidden passions, unsaid desires, and yearnings unfulfilled.

Wait, we’re not quite finished!

So, I put the question to you as a reader today as well. What does the word ‘romance’ really mean for you? Is ‘romance’ a driving force in your life? How have your beliefs about romantic relationships informed your own relationships? Perhaps seeing other couples (parents or friends) were some kind of influence. By reading romance novels, does that help to reaffirm things for you?

 

If you’d like to participate in this special feature, please contact me at marieannlavender@gmail.com and I’ll schedule a spot for you. As you can tell from the schedule on the right hand side of the page, we’re getting booked fast, but don’t hesitate to join in! You do not need to be a writer or author. We want to hear from anyone. We’d love to get your take on how you feel about romance, and why you keep reading our books! ♥♥♥ 

 

Thanks again, Isobelle, for giving us your take on the romance genre, and what romance itself has come to mean to you. Awesome! 😀

Readers, stay tuned for our next special feature on this topic when author Debbie White visits us on April 18th! Yay! 🙂

We’ll have other posts before then, though.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Filed under Authors, Blogging, Books, Event, Fiction, Guest Writer, Hope, Love, Message, Readers, Relationships, Romance, Writing

New Release Feature: I Wanna Get Laid by Kade by author duo Nikki Ashton & Victoria Johns, plus giveaway!

I am pleased to announce a great book release by Nikki Ashton and Victoria Johns, both authors I met during my journey! Their contemporary new adult romance, I Wanna Get Laid by Kade, officially released today! Yay! That’s awesome, ladies! :) Congrats on your new release!:)

When a new book comes out, it’s always an exciting time for an author!

Nikki and Victoria are giving us a look at their sexy modern romance, I Wanna Get Laid by Kade, today.

Wow! Great cover!

This is the blurb for I Wanna Get Laid by Kade:

If you lived on the streets and someone offered to change your life, would you? Of course you would, who wouldn’t? But, what if changing your life ruined that of the one person who cared about you? The one person who you cared about in return.

That’s what happened to me, Kade Sutton.

I became the star of a reality TV show, a show that was a catalogue of lies and duplicity. The show meant I got to spend time with Daisy Ingles, a girl whose beautiful smile brightened up my day, every day. This show also meant that I betrayed her. This show gave me many things, but I lost an awful lot too.

Set within the world of reality TV, ‘I Wanna Get Laid by Kade’ will have you hissing and booing at the bad guys, and cheering on the good ones. Kade will make you fall in love with him and Daisy will make you want to fight her corner.

With love, sex and betrayal this is a book you just can’t miss – it’s the path you’re meant to take.

And here is a teaser to entice you with.

 

What people are saying about this book:

“Seriously, there were so many great things about this book…Without a doubt, the authors have done a wonderful job with this one.”

“Such a strong story line with lots of believable twists and turns. I ended up staying up way too late finishing it.”

“The story is so much more than a simple tale of reality television.”

Goodreads Reviews

Purchase Links:

Universal Amazon link:  https://bookgoodies.com/a/B01NAVGP0K

Mybook.to/NAVJKade

B&N:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/i-wanna-get-laid-by-kade-nikki-ashton/1125960625

BAM:  http://www.booksamillion.com/p/Wanna-Get-Laid-Kade/Nikki-Ashton/9780995667884?id=6842447479054

Kobo:  https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/i-wanna-get-laid-by-kade

CreateSpace:  https://www.createspace.com/6877452

Nice! Who doesn’t love a gentleman? ♥♥♥ It looks like quite a ride!😉

Thank you for telling us about your book, Nikki and Victoria! I know I can’t wait to read this romance! 🙂

 

Readers, don’t forget to pick up a copy of this awesome book!

Oh, it almost skipped my mind. Drum roll please…*** This dynamic author team has a great deal for you today. Just head on over to their Facebook page to enter their release day giveaway! Who doesn’t love free? ***

So, check out this great romance novel! ♥

Author Bio – Nikki Ashton

Nikki lives in Cheshire with her husband, two dogs and lovely mother-in-law who supplies her with endless cups of tea. She writes romance with a touch of humor and lots of love, and hopes that she puts a smile on her reader’s faces.

Her ambitions of becoming a writer started at the age of 10 when she started writing poetry at school, and was given the honor of reading one of her poems to the rest of her year group (a truly embarrassing experience that she will never forget).

Nikki is grateful for the wide variety of strange and wonderful people in her life, otherwise she’d never know what to write about! She is currently talking to family and friends, finding out their innermost secrets in readiness for her next book.

Although all Nikki’s books are standalone stories, characters do make ‘guest appearances’. So, the best order to read them is:

Guess Who I Pulled Last Night

No Bra Required

Get Your Kit Off

Rock Stars Don’t Like Big Knickers

Rock Stars Don’t Like Ugly Bras

Rock Stars Do Like Christmas

Cheese Tarts & Fluffy Socks

Author Links

Website:  https://www.nikkiashtonbooks.co.uk/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/NikkiAshtonBooks/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/NikkerAsh

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Nikki-Ashton/e/B00C7QKDE8/

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7085471.Nikki_Ashton

Pinterest:  https://uk.pinterest.com/davnikash/

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

 

Author Bio – Victoria Johns

Victoria Johns is a Cheshire based writer with a wild imagination for steamy stories; she believes it’s every girl’s dream to experience a happily ever after.

Realizing it was time to live her own dream, she now enjoys daydreaming and creating fiery romance novels. When she’s not doing that, she can be found spending time with her family, cycling the countryside or enjoying pink fizz with her crazy friends.

Author Links

Website:  https://www.victoriajohnsbooks.com/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/victoriajohnsauthor/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/victoriajohns75

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Victoria-Johns/e/B00O24HYL8/

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5072971.Victoria_Johns

 

Thanks again, ladies! We hope to see you back on ILRB sometime. 

Happy reading, everyone!🙂

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Filed under Authors, Book Release, Books, Contemporary, Event, Fiction, New Adult, new release, Readers, Romance, Writing

New Release Feature: With One More Look At You by author Mary J. Williams

I am pleased to announce a great book release by Mary J. Williams, an author I met during my journey! Her contemporary romance, With One More Look At You, officially released today! Yay! That’s awesome, Mary! Congrats on your new release!:)

When a new book comes out, it’s always an exciting time for an author!

Mary is giving us a look at her modern romance, With One More Look At You, today.

Wow! Great cover!

This is the blurb for With One More Look At You:

WHEN IT COMES TO LOVE, SOMETIMES IT TAKES THE HEAD YEARS TO DISCOVER WHAT THE HEART HAS ALWAYS KNOWN

Forbes Branson was a young man ready for something new. A senior in high school, he was the golden boy. Heir to a fortune, he knew what his life was going to be. But he wanted adventure first. A year of freedom before college to do and go where he wanted. However, an unexpected betrayal would change everything.

Sophie Lipton was fifteen the first time she set foot on the Branson ranch. Dragged from one place to another, never having more than one pair of shoes or enough to eat, the moment she saw the wide open spaces, she felt she could breathe for the first time in her life. It was the home she always dreamed of. But her happiness came at a price.

To stay in her new home, Sophie had to keep somebody else’s lies. Lies that would eventually tear apart a family. And tear apart her friendship with Forbes.

Coming home is never easy—especially after twelve years. Forbes isn’t the same young man. He found his adventure—and more. Weary, he’s ready to settle into a slower, calmer life. Working on his family’s ranch and taking the job as Chief of Police sounds like a piece of cake after the things he had seen and done.

Sophie isn’t the quiet girl Forbes remembers. She’s grown into a strong, confident woman. A woman used to being in charge. The Branson ranch is her territory now. If Forbes thinks he’s going to waltz back in and take over, he’s going to find out fast that Sophie is no pushover.

Twelve years ago, they shared one goodbye kiss. More sweet than passionate. Now, as adults it’s a whole new game. The attraction between them is undeniable. Just as they begin to move forward, the past has other ideas.

Secrets rarely stay buried forever. Lies. Betrayal. Maybe even murder. Before Forbes and Sophie can think about the future, they will need to deal with the past. Together.

And here is an excerpt from With One More Look at You to tease you with.

Forbes didn’t know why, but he took Sophie’s hand. It was something he had never done. For a moment, he thought she would pull away. Instead, she curled her fingers around his. Something happened with that brief touch. A connection. An intimacy that he had neither the time nor inclination to analyze. The need to sneak away in the middle of the night had already heightened his emotions. That was his only excuse for what he did next.
Forbes brushed his lips across Sophie’s. Surprise flared in her eyes. But she didn’t punch him. So, he kissed her again. A little longer. There was nothing sexual in the gesture, though he felt a familiar stirring in his blood. Raising his head, he smiled, touching her cheek ever so lightly with the pad of his thumb.
“Well, I’ll be damned,” he breathed, backing away.
Sophie didn’t speak. Or move. She looked confused, a frown furrowing her brow. Her first kiss. Forbes was sure of it. There were a hundred other firsts she would share with other men. But this would always be his.
Forbes turned when he reached the trees. He waved, taking one last look at his home—at Sophie—before disappearing into the dark.

Check out the book trailer:

Purchase Links:

Universal Amazon link:  https://bookgoodies.com/a/B06XKW7PPY

B&N:  http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/with-one-more-look-at-you-mary-j-williams/1125988457

BAM:  http://www.booksamillion.com/p/One-More-Look/Mary-J-Williams/9780997616170?id=6842447479054

CreateSpace:  https://www.createspace.com/6878420

♥♥♥ It looks like quite the story!😉

Thank you for telling us about your book, Mary! I know I can’t wait to read this romance! 🙂

 

Readers, don’t forget to pick up a copy of this awesome book, free with Kindle Unlimited or you can get it at a special introductory price today!

Author Bio

Writing isn’t easy. But I love every second. A blank screen isn’t the enemy. It is the opportunity to create new friends and take them on amazing adventures and life-changing journeys. I feel blessed to spend my days weaving tales that are unique—because I made them.
Billionaires. Songwriters. Artists. Actors. Directors. Stuntmen. Football players. They fill the pages and become dear friends I hope you will want to revisit again and again.
Thank you for jumping into my books and coming along for the journey.

Author Links

Website:  http://www.maryjwilliams.net/

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mary-J-Williams/1561851657385417

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/maryjwilliams05

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Mary-J.-Williams/e/B00V041ET6/

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5648619.Mary_J_Williams

Newsletter:  http://www.maryjwilliams.net/ (‘mailing list’ on the home page)

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/maryj0675/

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/2015romance/

Bookbub:  https://www.bookbub.com/authors/mary-j-williams

 

Thanks again, Mary! We hope to see you back on ILRB sometime. 

Happy reading, everyone!🙂

4 Comments

Filed under Authors, Book Release, Books, Contemporary, Event, Fiction, new release, Readers, Romance, Women's Fiction, Writing

Special Feature: What Does Romance Mean to Me? by Lilly Christine

Hi, readers! I am beyond pleased to announce a very special post today on ILRB. Recently, I asked both authors and romance readers to come to me with their responses to this big question: “What Does Romance Mean to Me?” I was genuinely interested in what made us all tick, what continued to draw us to the genre. Why do we love “love” so much? I wanted to dig deep to the heart of each person. And I’ve gotten some incredible feedback.

Without further ado, let’s turn the mic over to author Lilly Christine, who has a few things to say about the question at hand.

What does romance mean to me?

In both real life romance and fiction, a partner or would-be partner goes the extra mile to create a special experience for their beloved. I hope everyone has memories of first real life romantic gestures…the carnation or special Valentine in middle school, a first dance, prom, et cetera. My first “real” boyfriend would pick me up from work and take me out for milkshakes, so teaberry milkshakes STILL spell *romance* for me!
I write romances because I love developing a journey to love for my characters, and my readers seem to enjoy it, too! My McGreers series features flawed characters challenged by this “thing called love”, sending them on journey that is often inconvenient, difficult, or near impossible. In McGreers #1, Crashing into Tess, the new girl Tess gives up hope before single-dad rancher Jake finally comes around. In #2, Crazy on Daisy, Hank Gallagher’s pined for barrel racer Daisy for years, and in #3-6 Right Kinda Bull/Whole Lotta Bull, Lindsay keeps a secret, testing Ty McGreer more than any of my other heroes.
I also enjoy weaving contemporary challenges couples face into the mix, so in #5, Loving Lulu, Lulu, a young mom, wants a career, which puts stress on her marriage, while her brother Kyle, an Iraq vet and Janie’s beau, struggles with PTSD. In #8, My Kinda Bull, Heath McGreer, a fossil fuel engineer, bumps into Christina Rodriguez, a Greenpeace activist, in Alaska.
My novels mirror the challenges of love-in-real-life, which for me makes writing the stories and crafting the characters that much more exciting. Thanks so much for reading!
Wow! Thanks for stopping by with your fascinating guest post, Lilly! Lovely to have you here! ♥
Guest Bio

lilly-headshot

Lilly Christine’s debut novel, Crashing Into Tess, won TRW’s 2013 “Catherine Award”,  was a 2014 finalist in DRW’s “Best First Book”, and “Best Contemporary” categories, and is the first in the popular McGreers Series. Lilly returns to her birthplace for the setting of “Philadelphia Love!” an exciting new urban rom-com Holiday Novella Series! In 2017, look for Valentine, Baby!, Sing It, Baby! and Independence, Baby?

Lilly currently resides in Reno, Nevada. When not writing, she can be found walking her Daschahuahua rescue puppy on the Truckee River.

Sign up for Lilly News

She’s always available for book-signings, readings and appearances, especially to benefit her reader’s favorite animal shelters and rescues. Contact her at LillyChristine13@gmail.com, or find her on Facebook!

Author Links

Website:  http://lillychristine.com/Books.html

Newsletter:  http://eepurl.com/3sg8X

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/lilly.christine.71

https://www.facebook.com/PhiladelphiaLove1/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/lillychristine1

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.com/Lilly-Christine/e/B00GLY93A2/

Goodreads:  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7276542.Lilly_Christine

LinkedIn:  https://www.linkedin.com/in/lilly-christine-a4839bbb

Pinterest:  https://www.pinterest.com/lillychristine1/

 

Wait, we’re not quite finished!

So, I put the question to you as a reader today as well. What does the word ‘romance’ really mean for you? Is ‘romance’ a driving force in your life? How have your beliefs about romantic relationships informed your own relationships? Perhaps seeing other couples (parents or friends) were some kind of influence. By reading romance novels, does that help to reaffirm things for you?

 

If you’d like to participate in this special feature, please contact me at marieannlavender@gmail.com and I’ll schedule a spot for you. As you can tell from the schedule on the right hand side of the page, we’re getting booked fast, but don’t hesitate to join in! You do not need to be a writer or author. We want to hear from anyone. We’d love to get your take on how you feel about romance, and why you keep reading our books! ♥♥♥ 

 

Thanks again, Lilly, for giving us your reasons for writing romance, and how you incorporate your own romantic beliefs into your books. Awesome! 😀

Readers, stay tuned for our next special feature on this topic when author Cynthia Helwig visits us on March 30th! Yay! 🙂

We’ll have other posts before then, though.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

2 Comments

Filed under Authors, Blogging, Books, Contemporary, Event, Fiction, Guest Writer, Hope, Love, Message, Readers, Romance, western, Writers, Writing

Get a copy of UYL!

By now, you probably already know that book three of the Heiresses in Love Series, Upon Your Love, released on February 26, 2017. Yay!

upon-your-love-final-cover

 

So, I’m popping in here to tell you about a new development. Today you have the chance to win a free ebook copy of UYL, if you just head over to the great 6th Anniversary Party over at The Romance Reviews. Congrats, TRR! 🙂

anniv2017

Stop by the party and answer the simple, yet brief Q&A to qualify for a chance to win in the contest for this historical romance/family saga novel! Plus, get a chance to win lots of other free prizes if you check out the event page daily this month.

Sounds great, right? Who doesn’t love free? ♥♥♥

So, go check it out! Maybe you’ll find something cool to read over there… 😉

3 Comments

Filed under Authors, Book Giveaways, Books, Event, Fiction, Historical, Historical Romance, Marie Lavender, Message, new release, Readers, Romance