Category: Author Spotlight

The Joys of True Gentlemanliness: Guest Post, Excerpt & #Giveaway by Grace Burrowes

Posted November 19, 2015 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Giveaways / 0 Comments

DanielsTrueDesireGraphicThe Joys of True Gentlemanliness… by Grace Burrowes

About twenty books ago, I lamented (whined) to one of my brothers that coming up with ways to challenge a romance hero into facing his worst fears and risking all to win the heroine’s heart was taxing my imagination. My brother, without a heartbeat’s pause said, “Make him choose between the competing demands of honor.”

THAT was great advice. Make the hero choose between the woman who needs him, and the military unit depending on him. Make him choose between avenging injustices from his past, or respecting the wishes of the pacifist woman he loves. Make him decide whether to be publicly vindicated or privately forgiving… Delightful stuff, for an author!

And yet, to travel along these brilliant character arcs, our hero must have one characteristic: He must have a well-developed sense of honor. To me, that means this fellow must be honest and kind. He can be poor, grouchy, lacking in charm, without prospects, unlucky in love—Daniel Banks is nodding his head—but ideally, he will still be a true gentleman at heart.

The true gentleman, alas for him, can be tormented from page one by the author and by the story, but from the start, the true gentleman will play by the rules of decency.

Rules are tough. The true gentleman will never misrepresent himself, which means Daniel Banks must inform Lady Kirsten that a) he’s married, and b) he won’t disrespect his vows. Too bad for Daniel, this honesty only raises him in the lady’s esteem, when he’s trying to emphasize his unsuitability.

The true gentleman will lend a hand—or an ear—to those in need. When Daniel Banks realizes that Lady Kirsten has been overlooked by her entire family, and is as lonely as an earl’s daughter can be, the least he can do is listen when she explains the misery in her past. Again, his respect for, and understanding of her increases, but what else could a gentleman have done?

The true gentleman is kind. He does not ignore the suffering of others, even if that means, he’s left with a bigger helping of suffering on his own plate. When Lady Kirsten needs a champion to fight her battles with an overbearing brother, Daniel steps up, though it might cost him his position. Once again, Daniel’s decency only gets him in hotter water, because now Kirsten’s brother is also viewing the impecunious, reserved, sometimes grouchy, vicar with renewed respect.

This business of being a true gentleman is darned hard, and darned heroic. What Daniel has to learn, though, is that true gentlemanliness begins at home. When he’s honest with himself, and shows himself the compassion we all deserve, all the inconvenient rules, tough choices, and honorable standards turn out to have been his second-best friends.

Lady Kirsten is, of course, his very best friend, being a true lady. But that’s another story…

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Daniel’s True Desire
by Grace Burrowes
Series: True Gentlemen #2
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Release Date: November 3, 2015
Format: Paperback/eBook, 116 pages

Book Description:

An honorable life

Daniel Banks is a man of the cloth whose vocation is the last comfort he has left-and even his churchman’s collar is beginning to feel like a noose. At the urging of family, Daniel attempts to start his life over as vicar in the sleepy Kentish town of Haddondale, family seat to the earls of Bellefonte.

Challenged by passion

Lady Kirsten Haddonfield has resigned herself to a life of spinsterhood. Then the handsome new village vicar, Reverend Daniel Banks, becomes a guest of the Haddonfield family while the vicarage is being renovated, and Kirsten finds herself rethinking her position. Lady Kirsten does not know that Daniel’s past is about to cast a shadow on love’s future.

Buy Links:  Amazon • Barnes & Noble • iBooks
Book Links: Goodreads

Excerpt

Daniel Banks is the new vicar in Haddondale, temporarily a guest of Lady Kirsten’s family. They’ve dragooned him into tutoring some of the local boys, and Kirsten is managing the staff who’ll turn the dower house into a place of learning. What Daniel doesn’t know is how a married man, even one estranged from his unworthy spouse, can resist the allure of friendship with Lady Kirsten…

“I dread crossing the garden,” Lady Kirsten said. “Susannah has taken up reading old issues of La Belle Assembleé, Della is memorizing DeBrett’s, and the countess talks only of fashion. Nobody does anything.”

“Most would envy them their idleness,” Daniel said, though he did not. The earl gave a good account of himself, tending to significant acreage and mercantile interests, but the women were bored.

One of the women was mortally bored, though never boring.

“I want to take the vicarage in hand,” Lady Kirsten said, marching from the pantry. “I doubt I’ll have time before we leave for Town the week after next. Lemon and beeswax won’t cure rising damp any way.”

Nothing cured rising damp save for replacing every scrap of affected wood. “You’re leaving soon, then?”

The prospect of distance from Lady Kirsten should have been a relief. She was unconventional, discontent, and unpredictable. Worse yet, she was patient with small boys, had a strong streak of domestic competence, and could not dissemble even to appease appearances.

Most troublesome of all, Daniel liked her. A lot.

“I smell fresh bread.” Lady Kirsten’s pace increased, then she halted to twist a sachet from behind a curtain. “Nicholas told George that in addition to Digby and the Blumenthal brats, you’re to take on both of Squire Webber’s sons. He aspires to send them to public school, but they lack a foundation.”

And years of dedicated tutors had been unable to remedy that lack? “I think you had better join me for lunch,” Daniel said resuming their progress toward a hot meal.

“I believe I shall. I adore a hearty beef stew with bread and butter on a cold, rainy day. Cook uses Mama’s recipe, and I’m partial to it.”

Peasant fare, for an earl’s daughter. Daniel liked her entirely too well.

A scullery maid set places for them at a wooden table heavy enough to double as a threshing floor, while Lady Kirsten served up bowls of steaming stew and Daniel sliced the bread. Daniel held the lady’s chair, and then, without even a nod in the direction of further small talk, took shameless advantage of his companion.

“I want to know every detail you can share about my scholars, Lady Kirsten. They’re shaping up to be a pack of ne’er-do-wells, scamps and scapegraces. One wonders if the parish isn’t attempting to run me off rather than welcome me.”

She snapped her serviette across her lap. “They’re out and out rotters, every one save for Digby, but George says he’s showing dubious potential. Don’t steal all the butter.”

Daniel passed her ladyship the plate of butter, small golden molds in the shape of roses.

“Your butter, and Lord-we-thank-Thee-for-this- food, amen. Now tell me about these scoundrels.”

Lady Kirsten sat back, her smile indulgent. “I’ve known them since they were babies, Mr. Banks. They’re full of energy and mischief, and there’s not a Latin scholar among them. They are truly, truly awful.”

She loved these rotten boys, and—greatest possible inconvenience—Daniel regarded this her most attractive quality of all.

About Grace Burrowes

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Grace Burrowes' bestsellers include The Heir, The Soldier, Lady Maggie's Secret Scandal, Lady Sophie's Christmas Wish and Lady Eve's Indiscretion. Her Regency romances have received extensive praise, including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist. Grace is branching out into short stories and Scotland-set Victorian romance with Sourcebooks. She is a practicing family law attorney and lives in rural Maryland.

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End of Summer Blog Tour Guest Post: Victoria Dahl

Posted August 12, 2015 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Contemporary Romance, Giveaways / 4 Comments

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Click Button to Follow the Entire Tour!

Summer Adventure – Taking the Heat

by Victoria Dahl

Even though I live in a winter sports town, summer is my time for adventure. For me, adding ice to an activity sounds like a guaranteed trip to the hospital. I’ll pass. Actually, I would’ve passed on almost any adventure ten years ago, but as I got closer to forty, I decided to start taking on a few things that scared me.

I tried running, public speaking, river rafting, overseas travel. Then I did the scariest thing of all. Rock climbing.

It seemed like a great idea at the time. I was just starting work on Taking the Heat, and the hero is a rock climber. I live in the mountains. I could actually try climbing as research for the book!

I planned for a month, made an appointment with an expert guide and started doing some upper body exercises because I have the arms of a chubby newborn. I’m not an athletic person, but I was so excited! I figured I’d learn a lot and go up about 20 feet.

We did not go 20 feet. This was the view from halfway up. [Picture 1, Storm Mountain]

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Picture 1 – Storm Mountain

It was, by far, the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done. I thought my instructor would be right there next to me, pointing out exactly what to do, but that’s not how belaying works. He climbed up and anchored the line and called down encouragement. It was all me.

At first it was easy. I was concentrating on finding the next foothold and it wasn’t much harder than climbing a ladder. Then I got stuck on this smooth face. [Picture 2 – From Above]

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Picture 2 -Stuck on Smooth Side

That was when I really wanted it to be over, and I wasn’t anywhere near done. I stayed on that face for a good five minutes, maybe ten, just breathing and looking at the rock and trying to convince myself that I could ease my way over the slanted rock face even if there weren’t any ledges to hold on to.

I did it. One hundred feet up. My legs were jelly, I felt like I’d been in a car accident and I really needed a drink, but I did it and I never once said “I can’t,” no matter how many times I thought it. And I was so, so proud of myself. There aren’t enough moments in our life when we truly let ourselves feel pride without an ounce of guilt. [Picture 3 – Rappelling]

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Picture 3 – Rappelling

So I encourage you to get out there and find your own adventure this summer, even if it’s as simple as a hike on a trail or an hour in a canoe. I think trying new things changes us in the best ways…and that’s really the theme of Taking the Heat. Trying new things, taking some chances. What have you been dying to try?

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Taking the Heat by Victoria Dahl

Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: HQN Books (July 28, 2015)

Passion this hot can’t be faked…

All revved up for bright lights and steamy nights, writer Veronica Chandler chased her dreams to New York City. When she hit a dead end, reality sent her back home to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Saving her pride and her new gig—writing a relationship advice column!—requires some faking. No one can know the truth about her big-city flop or her nonexistent sex life. But the town’s irresistibly rugged librarian is determined to figure her out…and give her hands-on lessons in every wicked thing she wants to know.

Gabe MacKenzie’s heart might be in Wyoming, but secretly his future’s tied up in his family’s Manhattan legacy. Getting down and dirty with Veronica is supposed to give him a few memorable nights—not complicate his plans. But the thing about heat this scorching is there’s just no going back…and it might be too hot for either of them to take.

Purchase Links: Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About Victoria Dahl

Victoria Dahl lives with her family in a small town high in the Utah mountains. During the summer, she hikes and drinks margaritas (usually not at the same time.) During the winter she likes to curl up with a book and a cup of hot cocoa and think about all those poor, freezing skiers working so hard out in the snow.

She’s been reading romance since the age of twelve and started her first manuscript at the tender age of twenty. Occasionally, on dark and stormy nights, she bravely posts excerpts of that original story on her blog for the entertainment of her readers.

Her first published novel won the Golden Heart award. Since then, she's published over twenty-five books and novellas, including three USA Today bestsellers, and several of her books have been nominated for the prestigious RITA® Award for excellence in the romance genre.

Tourwide Giveaway

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER.  Purchase or acceptance of a product offer does not improve your chances of winning. Sweepstakes opens 8/3/2015 at 12:01 AM (EDT) and closes 9/1/2015 at 11:59 PM (EDT).  Enter online athttps://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/82ae250c9/Open to legal residents of the U.S. and Canada who have reached the age of majority or older.  Void where prohibited by law. Void in Quebec.  One (1) prize available to be won consisting of: one (1) print copy of each of Back to You by Lauren Dane, Finding Glory by Sara Arden, Taking the Heat by Vitoria Dahl,Can’t Fight This Feeling by Christie Ridgway, and Second Chance with the Billionaire  by Janice Maynard; one (1) e-book copy of Riding Dirty by Jill Sorensen; one (1) Harlequin tote bag; and a Fifty dollar ($50.00 USD) VISA gift card (Total ARV: $92.00 USD). Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received.  Full details and Official Rules available online at https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/82ae250c9/. Sponsor: Harlequin Enterprises Limited.

Guest Post: The Laws of Seduction by Gwen Jones

Posted December 4, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight / 4 Comments
Guest Post: The Laws of Seduction by Gwen Jones

Today we welcome author Gwen Jones to Urban Girl Reader! She’s taking over and talking about where her story ideas come from and her newest release The Laws of Seduction which released from Avon Impulse in ebook in November and will be releasing in paperback on December 30th.  Take it away Gwen……….. WRITER’S CORNER – Shopping for Topic I’ve had people ask me where my story ideas come from. Do they drop like rain out of the heavens, or sprout beneath my feet like daisies? Do they barrel into me like a runaway train, or slip into my unconscious like warmth from a cup of hot cocoa? Truth be told, all of the above are correct, as I never know when an idea is going to hit me. But it’s also true there are several places where I go to mine them. Such as… History – Just pick up any history book, […]

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Guest Post, Excerpt & Giveaway: Silent Night by C.J. Kyle

Posted October 23, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Book Spotlight, Giveaways / 6 Comments
Guest Post, Excerpt & Giveaway: Silent Night by C.J. Kyle

Imaginary Friends by CJ Kyle I grew up as a military brat. Every two years, we moved to a new state or country, which meant I left friends behind all over the world. Kids are resilient, and while saying goodbye was always hard, saying hello, for me, was always harder. I’m an introvert. Painfully shy and awkward, never quite fitting in. Each move brought with it the possibility of reinvention, which excited me, but I could never break out of my shell enough to belong anywhere, really. In that corner of my life, books became my heroes. Some of the most important people in my life are completely made up. Yet they’re so real to me that they saved me from feeling lonely, and probably have a great deal to do with how I ended up making a career out of creating my own. So my gift to you, dear […]

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Gritty and Sexy Playlist, Excerpt & Giveaway: Shifting Currents by Lissa Trevor

Posted October 3, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Giveaways / 6 Comments
Gritty and Sexy Playlist, Excerpt & Giveaway: Shifting Currents by Lissa Trevor

Gritty and Sexy A Playlist for Shifting Currents By Lissa Trevor Shifting Currents is an erotic urban fantasy set in a dystopian future. A meteorite has crashed into the Earth, not unlike the one that destroyed the dinosaurs many years ago. Life as we know it has been forever changed. Some humans who have survived have mutated special abilities. Shifters shape shift and Techs channel energy through their bodies to charge up electrical devices. Trading and bartering are how you survive, and if you don’t have any of the necessary skills, you pay with your body. My play list for the book reflects the characters and also what’s happening around them. 1. You Oughta know – Alanis Morisette My heroine, Bethany, uses her Tech powers to charge up her salvaged iPod and bring in this song as she watches her ex and his new wife walk around the conclave. When […]

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Guest Post with Jeffe Kennedy for Rogue’s Paradise

Posted September 28, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight / 5 Comments
Guest Post with Jeffe Kennedy for Rogue’s Paradise

Guest Post with Jeffe Kennedy A lot of us waited a long time for Rogue and Gwynn to consummate their relationship, which finally occurs in Rogue’s Paradise, the culmination of the Covenant of Thorns trilogy. I include myself in that group because I knew from the beginning that their path would never be a straightforward one. Much as I rooted for Gwynn to relent and give in to Rogue – because, hello, he seriously does it for me, too – I also knew she wouldn’t be able to until her doubts were resolved. After all, she’s no dummy. I never wanted her to fall into the trap of making a bad choice out of emotion or sexual desire. So I anticipated having fun getting to “be there” when they finally got to enjoy each other fully, but I was surprised how much I enjoyed their growing intimacy and the daily […]

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Q&A and Excerpt: No Limits by Lori Foster

Posted September 18, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Book Spotlight, Reviews / 6 Comments
Q&A and Excerpt: No Limits by Lori Foster

NO LIMITS Lori Foster – Q&A  Can you tell us a little bit about your latest release, NO LIMITS? This is Cannon’s story, a character that readers met in my last series, Love Undercover. From the second Cannon showed up on the page, I knew he’d get his own story. He’s that kind of guy, the guy who steps up and takes notice and gets a lot of notice in return. In NO LIMITS, Cannon reunites with Yvette, another character from the previous series. They parted under strained circumstances, with Cannon just heading into professional MMA and Yvette young and traumatized from a horrific threat. Cannon saved her then, but he was noble because of her age and what she’d been through. Now she’s older, more independent, and he’s ready to make up for lost time. What was it like getting inside the mind of a mixed martial arts fighter? […]

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Guest Post & Giveaway: Maximum Risk by Jennifer Lowery

Posted September 16, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Giveaways / 37 Comments
Guest Post & Giveaway: Maximum Risk by Jennifer Lowery

Welcome to Urban Girl Reader’s stop on Maximum Risk Blog Tour. Jennifer Lowery is our special guest post today and she is talking about the joys of writing and the role music plays in it.  Check out her guest post and then be sure to enter the giveaway!!  Also, take advantage of Jennifer’s offer to get a free copy of her short story Taking Chances when you sign up for her newsletter. Hi Urban Girl Reader and all you fabulous readers out there *waves* Thank you so much for having me today! My romantic suspense, Maximum Risk (Book #1, Wolff Securities) released this month so I’m very excited to be here! Thank you so much for sharing it with me!! In honor of my release I am giving away an e-book copy of any one of my books (go to my WEBSITE to choose) to one lucky commenter so please leave me a […]

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Guest Post & Giveaway: The Lone Sheriff by Lynna Banning

Posted September 10, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Book Spotlight, Giveaways / 8 Comments
Guest Post & Giveaway: The Lone Sheriff by Lynna Banning

Welcome to Urban Girl Reader’s stop on The Lone Sheriff Blog Tour. Lynna Banning is our special guest post today and she is talking about The Pinkertons detective history which is a part of The Lone Sheriff.  Check out her post and then be sure to enter the giveaway!! The Pinkertons By Lynna Banning Known as the first private eye, Allan Pinkerton set up his North-West Detective Agency in 1850.  His motto AWe Never Sleep proved true during the Civil War, when he aborted an assassination attempt on President Lincoln in Baltimore; Lincoln, on his way to Washington for his inauguration, was so impressed with Pinkerton=s intelligence-gathering that he offered him a job. In 1856 Pinkerton had created the Female Detective Bureau, and though his sons tried to disband the fledgling organization, the lady detectives proved their worth and thrived, particularly during the Civil War.  The first female Pinkerton agents were […]

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Guest Post, Spotlight & Giveaway: Always by Shyla Colt

Posted September 9, 2014 by Sherri in Author Spotlight, Book Spotlight, Giveaways / 7 Comments
Guest Post, Spotlight & Giveaway: Always by Shyla Colt

Welcome to Urban Girl Reader’s stop on the Always by Shyla Colt blog tour. Today she is here to let us know the backstory on Always; why she wrote it. We also have an special excerpt from Cora’s point of view.  Also, be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom since there is a special tour giveaway. As part of the tour there are seven (7) blogs that have a Hop Image and text sentence.  Use the image/text to answer the Rafflecopter question and gain an entry to the Grand Prize Giveaway.  Psst, each blog stop location is provided in the Rafflecopter Giveaway.  So don’t be shy, click open the Rafflecopter Giveaway to find your next stop. Guest Post Five Love doesn’t guarantee forever In this story, I wanted to explore what it took to keep love during the rough and rocky parts. I wanted to show how […]

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