11/20/2019

Another Christmas Hit !!

CHRISTMAS ANGELS

A heartwarming Christmas story filled with the magic and miracles of the holiday season by USA Today Bestselling author, Nancy Naigle.

Growing up, Liz Westmoreland dreamed of taking over her grandparents inn located in the small mountain town of Antler Creek only for it to be sold before she ever got the chance. While browsing the internet, she stumbles upon a listing for what looks to be the picturesque inn and it’s set to go to auction. Liz places a bid, and by a miracle, wins the auction. But when she gets there she finds the property in significant disrepair.

When Matt Hardy narrowly lost the inn and property that butted his land, he just hoped it wasn't another city slicker coming to make matters worse after the previous owners gutted the place for an art gallery. But the minute he recognized the sweet, freckle-faced girl from his childhood and heard her plans to reopen the inn, he jumps at the chance to help his childhood crush restore a place where he made so many fond memories.


While working on repairs, Liz and Matt discover her grandmother’s collection of angels in one of the cabins. When the angels start mysteriously showing up all over the inn, she begins to look at them as reassurance—that restoring the inn is what she's meant to do. But when an accident leaves Liz feeling like she made a mistake, will Matt—and the residents of Antler Creek—be able to show Liz that she's found a home? And possibly true love as well?

"Bright with abundant holiday cheer and good-hearted community members, and, like a dash of HGTV with a large dose of Hallmark, it’s delightfully entertaining." ―Booklist

"CHRISTMAS ANGELS is a beautiful story full of kindness, warmth and love that can be enjoyed any time of year, but it should definitely not be missed at Christmas time. I give it a Perfect 10!" ―Romance Reviews Today

"A lovely holiday romance ... Ms. Naigle delivers a charming story that will capture your heart from beginning to end ... CHRISTMAS ANGELS is simply a sensational story with a side of snap and sass!" ―Romance Junkies

"Heartwarming ... Naigle’s inspirational, TV movie–like Christmas story is a pleasant way to spend a chilly fall day." ―Publishers Weekly


"Libraries looking for holiday romances...will want to snag this title for their collections." ―Library Journal

USA Today bestselling author NANCY NAIGLE whips up small-town love stories with a dash of suspense and a whole lot of heart. She began her popular contemporary romance series Adams Grove while juggling a successful career in finance and life on a seventy-six-acre farm. She went on to produce works in collaboration with other authors, including the Granny series. Now happily retired from a career in finance, she devotes her time to writing, antiquing, and enjoying the occasional spa day with friends. A Virginia girl at heart, Nancy now calls North Carolina home.

Some of her other titles include The Secret Ingredient, Christmas in Evergreen: Letters to Santa, and Recipe for Romance. Download a complete list of Nancy's books from her website, then stay up to date with future releases by joining Nancy's free Newsletter. 
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CHAPTER TWO EXCERPT
read a little, buy the book
 Liz motioned for Dan to follow her to the kitchen island. “Look at this. I’m sure it’s my grandparents’ old place.”
“You haven’t been back there in what? Twenty years?” Dan pulled the computer closer and looked at the listing.
“Maybe fifteenish.”
“Nice. Yeah. Wait. What are you thinking?” Dan lifted his gaze, then cocked his head. “You’re not seriously considering—”
“I’ve been waiting for this my whole life. Angels Rest is practically mine.” Excitement forced her words out in a flurry. “So, how do I do this auction thing?”
“You don’t.” He closed the top of the computer, and handed her a barbecue sandwich. “Not without going to see the condition of the house and checking to make sure you’re not also buying old liens against the place.”
“There’s no time. It goes up for auction in the morning. I’ve read through the FAQ’s, it doesn’t look that complicated. I need to get a proof of funds letter from my banker before I can bid though.”
“You’re going to bid on this place sight unseen? I have to advise against it, Liz. That’s just plain crazy.” Dan ran a hand through his hair. “You’re always talking about situations being a ‘sign’; well, maybe this is a sign that you should let this crazy idea go once and for all.”
“No. It’s not a sign to let it go. Finding out the day before Angels Rest goes up for auction is a sign it’s meant to be.” She scooted closer to him and opened the laptop again. “Look at these. The pictures don’t look so bad. Okay, so it’s overgrown, but that’s cosmetic.”
“Pictures can hide a multitude of problems. Very expensive ones, and the fact that there are only three pictures total is a red flag, especially since only one shows the house. The other is an aerial. You have no idea what it looks like inside.”
“It’s rustic. It’s a timber home, what could go wrong?”
“Termites?”
He had a point. “Well, the thing is still standing.”
“You have no way of really knowing that without going and taking a professional with you to check it out.” Dan leaned against the counter. “Why are you so hell-bent on this idea? You’re good at what you do. You have a good life here. Why the heck would you want to move to the mountains?”
“I loved spending time with my grandparents. The mountains are like an old friend to me. The nature. The quiet. I always thought I’d rent rooms out to people, and help them enjoy the area just like Gram and Pop. It was a good and pleasing way of life.”
“You’d be bored out of your skull up there. No shopping. Probably no pizza delivery. You do love pizza.”
“I can make my own pizza.”
He cocked his head.
“I could learn.”
“You love your job.”
“I wouldn’t say I love it. I’m good at it. But I could still do some projects if I get bored. I love that place. It’s why I’ve worked so hard and saved for so long. Every bonus, every raise—I’ve invested it all for this one dream.”
Dan folded his arms. “So that’s why I couldn’t get you to look at a new house last year?”
“Exactly. I told you. I have everything I need here. I’ve got money socked away for a new place.” She raised her eyebrows.
“The right place. The one that I’ve had in my heart since as long as I can remember.”
“But a person in your position should live in a much nicer house in a much better area of the city. Maybe you’d be happier here if—”
“There’s nothing wrong with this house or my neighborhood. Or Angels Rest.”
“I didn’t say there was. Your house will be an easy sell, but I just didn’t think you were really serious about a house in the mountains.”
“You never listen to what I say.” Which was fine, really. It would be a different story if he were her boyfriend, but their relationship wasn’t like that.
“I do listen. Kind of. I guess I just didn’t put two and two together.”
“Well, call it four and help me, why don’t you?” He handed her a plate with barbecue, slaw, baked beans, and corn bread on it. “Do you know how much work a place like that could take?”
“I can take a leave of absence to do the renovation. It won’t be much different from what I do on a daily basis, but instead of opening a mega-retail site I’ll be opening an inn. I can do contract work from up there and do both for a while until I build up a clientele.”
“You really have thought this through.”
“I’ve been dreaming of it for years, Dan.” She walked into the living room with her plate and plopped down on the sofa.
“You just don’t get it. My grandparents owned this inn on the mountainside of Antler Creek. What are the odds of me finding this out the night before it goes on sale?”
He sat down in one of the chairs and balanced his plate on his knee. “One in a million, I’m sure.”
“Right. Each summer,” Liz said, “people came not just to Antler Creek, but to my grandparents’ inn for the fishing and fireside cookouts, and every winter they came for the skiing and Christmas festivities. The inn was known for the best Christmas lights around. You could see them from down in the valley. People came from miles around.” In her mind she was back there, bundled up and excited as people began to join together. “There were carriage rides up the mountain to see the lights up close. Gram would make hot chocolate and her secret-recipe cookies for visitors. I helped. It was magical.”
Dan took out his phone and started typing. “And today the population in Antler Creek is eleven hundred twenty-nine, and twenty-five years ago the population was twelve hundred thirty-four.”
So there wasn’t much growth. That was just year-round population. “A steady population,” she reasoned.
“A stagnant one.”
“It’s not about the population. Or maybe it is. Antler Cree is quaint. It’s the perfect place to relax. I loved spending time there.”
“That was a long time ago, Liz. And you haven’t been back in years. What’s that say about it?”
She shut her mouth. That was a fair point. “It broke my heart a little that my grandparents left it behind. I’d always assumed I’d take it over from them.”
“What will your guests do with their time when they stay with you?”
“All the things they used to. Enjoy nature. Fly-fishing. Antiquing. Hike to the waterfall. Pop led hikes and fishing excursions nearly every week.” Am I really brave enough to do this?
“I guess the waterfall would still be there,” he said. “Are you going to take strangers on hikes in the woods? That sounds like a recipe for disaster.”
“Why not? And fly-fishing on the stream was amazing in the summer. I used to be quite good at it.”
He sighed. “You know I’m not going to wade out in cold water and fish, right?”
She shrugged. This wasn’t about the two of them. He knew that too. “You can visit. I promise to have Wi-Fi.”
His mouth tugged to the side the way it did when he was disappointed.
“Be happy for me,” she said. “Please?”
He sucked in a deep breath. “I’m still not saying this is a good idea, but if you’re going to do it be careful. The sale is as-is, where-is, so if you win, you’re stuck with it even if it’s a hunk of termite-ridden rubbish.”
“I hear you. You’ve made your point, but I’m also stuck with it if it’s exactly like I remember, and that would be awesome.” She grinned so wide her lashes tickled her cheeks.
“I head to Denver tomorrow night for my cousin’s wedding,”
Dan said. “Are you sure I can’t talk you into coming with me instead? It’ll be a great party and a fun long weekend. Could save you six figures.”
She’d declined the invitation weeks ago. “No thanks. I’ve got things to do around here that I’ve neglected the past couple of months while I was working in South Carolina.” She took in a long deep breath, crossed her fingers, and held them up. “Or I might own a new home.” He rolled his eyes, and shoved the last bit of barbecue into his mouth. “I’ll be back Tuesday. Keep me posted.”
The next morning, Liz had met with her banker, submitted her proof of funds, and finished her entries on the auction portal with little time to spare before the auction began.
Like Dan, her banker had given her a speech about buying a property at auction sight unseen. He hadn’t seemed any less concerned when she mentioned that she used to spend every summer and winter there as a kid, and that she had a good feeling about this. It might have sounded like an impulse purchase to him, but she’d been wishing, hoping, and planning for this for years. It was surely meant to be. It didn’t really matter what his personal thoughts were. This was her decision, and her money, and she had the proof of funds letter in hand. She was set.


OTHER CHRISTMAS STORIES
BY NANCY

Christmas in Evergreen
Christmas in Evergreen: Letters to Santa
Hope at Christmas
The Christmas Shop

Catch her HALLMARK MOVIES



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Your Host, Angi Morgan
Get Lost on Facebook   @GetLostInAStory  #GetLostStories

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WHAT IS YOUR CHRISTMAS JOY?

11/19/2019

New Release From Shirley Hailstock

Please join me in welcoming Bestselling Author Shirley Hailstock. 

~ ~ ~

Shirley was President of NJRW when I joined in 1995.  She has always paid it forward, encouraging those she mentored to do the same.



C.H.: What is your favorite romance read?
Shirley: This is too hard a question to answer. It would depend on who the author is. I have favorite authors, automatic buys without even reading the back cover copy. To choose one book out of all those that I've read, it too impossible a task.

C.H.: Would you rather watch a Romantic Comedy or a Romantic Drama?

Shirley: Romantic Drama. I love stories where there is a lot of action. This is why I gravitate to romantic suspense when I write. My favorite movie is Casablanca, even though the characters don't end up together at the end of the movie. Don't worry, I rewrote it in my mind, so they do get together. Same thing with Gone with the Wind. Scarlett definitely gets Rhett back. And they live happily ever after.

C.H.: Do you have a favorite reading spot?
Shirley: I don't have a particular place to read. Wherever there is a book, I can read. I usually read in bed because I don't want to go to sleep without reading something. But I read at the doctor's office, waiting for my kid at a sporting event or picking her up from practice. I listen to books in my car. There's no place that isn’t a good place to read.



C.H.: Do you curl up with book and a cup of tea or coffee?
Shirley: Not often. I write most of the time. Time is so precious and I have so many goals and deadlines that when I'm in my office, I write. Reading is when I'm done for the night and crawl into bed. No tea or coffee at that hour. 

C.H.: Do you prefer reading an e-book or holding a book in your hands?
Shirley: I prefer holding book in my hands, but I'm getting more and more used to the Kindle. What I like about the Kindle is if I'm not happy with a book I'm reading, I don't have to go find another one. There's one right there on the machine and I can see if it will be more appealing to my mood. There are some authors whose books I have to hold. I want the full reading experience and I feel I savor their books more when I read them. I suppose you can liken that experience to the past when we didn't wait for the paperback. When a certain author had a book out, we bought it and read it the moment we got home.


C.H.: What is the title of the first book you published? 
Shirley: My first published book was titled Whispers of Love. When I re-published it as an e-book, I changed the title to Under the Sheets. It's available as a download under that title.


C.H.: Do you remember where you were when you got the call?
Shirley: That's an easy question. I'd had surgery and I was tired a lot. I was about to take a nap and told my kids not to wake me. When the phone rang, my son came in and Monica Harris (my then future editor) was on the phone. I couldn't even talk. I tried to say her name and nothing came out, not even a croak. I took the phone and swallowed hard. My voice didn't even sound like mine when I was able to speak. And as to thinking clearly, I barely understood what she was saying after, "I want to buy your book…"



C.H.: Do you have a favorite series that you have written?

Shirley: I have a romantic suspense series called Capitol Chronicles where the majority of the stories take place in Washington, DC. I lived in the capital for many years and love the energy of the place. Setting books there seemed natural to me. Capitol Chronicles is a set of five novels and one novella.



C.H.: Any favorite character or characters that still wake you up at night?
Shirley: Jack Temple. He's the hero of More than Gold. Below is a question on whether I'm a plotter or a pantser. This book I plotted out, but somewhere along the way, I got off the guidelines and started writing as a pantser. Jack Temple was more real to me than any other character I'd written. I still think about that book. It's definitely a keeper for me, but if I hadn't written it, it would still be on my keeper shelf.



C.H.: Do you prefer to plot out your stories, or do you just wing it?
Shirley: I'm a plotter. I love to have the entire story in my head and know where I'm going when I sit down to write. I feel it helps me write faster since I'm not looking at a blinking cursor and wondering what comes next. Writers know there is no wrong way to write, only your way of doing it. Pantsers, those who like the story to unfold for them as it does for the characters, are doing it their way and that works. But for me, I plot.

~ ~ ~
Meet Shirley:

Shirley Hailstock, best-selling, award-winning novelist, holds a bachelors degree in Chemistry from Howard University in Washington, D.C. and an MBA in Chemical Marketing from Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, NJ. Her initial wish was to join the space program.

Hailstock is a past president of Romance Writers of America, the largest genre writing organization in the world with more than 10,000 members. She's active locally and nationally, having served on the National Board of Directors for seven years. She is also a past president of the New Jersey Romance Writers and a past officer of Women Writers of Color. She writes contemporary romantic suspense, paranormal, historical romance and mainstream women's fiction.

Under the Sheets, Hailstock's debut romantic suspense received critical acclaim from the Gothic JournalRomantic Times MagazineAffaire de CoeurRendezvous and Booklist. Hailstock is one of the authors of the inaugural line of ethnic romances initially published by Pinnacle Books, but is now part of Harlequin Enterprises' family of imprints.  Under the Sheets, winner of the HOLT Medallion from the Virginia Romance Writers, is now in its 4th printing and was optioned for a television movie (option expired).

Clara’s Promise, Hailstock’s first historical romance, won the Utah Romance Writers' Heart of the West Award. Her other novels continue to make best-seller lists and garner awards including the Romantic Times Award as the Best Multicultural Romance and the Waldenbooks Award. Additionally, Hailstock holds a Career Achievement Award from Romantic Times Magazine, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the New York City Chapter of RWA, and an Emma Merritt Service Award from RWA.  Her novel, Legacy, is listed as one of the 100 Greatest Romance Novels of the 20th Century.

Hailstock is the author of over 40 novels and novellas. Living in Central New Jersey, Hailstock has been an Adjunct Professor of Accounting at Rutgers University, New Brunswick campus and Novel Writing at Middlesex County College and Seton Hill University.
~ ~ ~
Where to find Shirley:



Here's the Blurb for Shirley's
November 5th Release: 



Melissa wants to believe in the legend of the fountain waters, but nothing ever happened to her in True Springs. Spiriting off to Hawaii, she's surrounded by flyboys and the women they see when on the island. Melissa refuses to be one of them. Then pilot Jordan Scott steps into her world. Will she use the vials of water from the spring and take the chance that he is her ticket to true love?
~ ~ ~
Read an Excerpt:
Hot Nights in Honolulu - Excerpt
by
Shirley Hailstock

Chapter 1

            Midnight had come and gone. Most of the sun worshipers were asleep. Usually the hotel was quiet. During the day, tourists rushed about seeing the island, lazed on the beach or climbed Diamond Head Mountain. Thousands of ergs of energy they never would have used if they'd remained in their homes on the U.S. mainland or some other country. But Hawaii was different. The islands were beautiful and the tourists' time on them would be short. They needed to see all there was to see before planes took them back to reality. Consequently, when the sun set, they faded fast. Some went out to the shows, but most were asleep by now.
            However, the guest in room 1850 was obviously not like the normal clientele Melissa Wyman encountered on the night shift.
            "Him again?" she asked as Hailee dropped her headset on the counter.
            Hailee nodded. "He's called three times in the last ten minutes.
            "What's his problem?" Melissa asked.
            "He says the sink doesn't work properly. I've called engineering, but you know they have a skeleton crew on staff at this time and no one picked up."
            "I'll take care of it?" Melissa said.
            "Are you sure?" Hailee frowned.
            "Of course, I'm sure. I can fix anything in this hotel, including Mr. 1850."


Buy Link for Hot Nights in Honolulu:

11/17/2019

Through My Lens: Coast to Coast

 
I LOVE TO TRAVEL
pretty much everyone knows this about me.
But I have to admit that it's good to currently be home snuggling with my three pups and occasionally just going for a walk with them! I was actually on both coasts within a couple of days.
Saturday in Jacksonville, Florida. 
Sunday in Dallas, Texas. 
Monday in Monterey, California.
Oceanside, Florida
Angi & Amy Atwell











Angi & Amanda Reid
Montereey, California
East Coast









West Coast












Savannah, Georgia writing retreat.
Lena Diaz, Angi, Darcy Crowder, Jean Willet, Tracy Brody




AND SHOULD I MENTION that each trip had additional driving to meet more friends? Okay...I will. LOL
chocolates






Savannah, Georgia
Savannah

Savannah










Angi, Tami Cowden, Amanda Reid











Angi, Robin Perini, Amanda Reid










California
Lake Meade, Nevada

Arizona

New Mexico

BACK IN TEXAS
THERE WILL BE MORE TRAVELING TO SHARE...
YOU CAN COUNT ON THAT.
USA Today Bestselling author ANGI MORGAN writes on-the-run suspense where honor and danger collide with love. Her work is a multiple contest finalist and Publishers Weekly best-seller. She drags her dogs –and husband– around Texas for research road trips so she can write off her camera. They now have a map with highlighted roads they’ve traveled. Every detour somehow makes it into a book. 

Website   Facebook   FB Fan Page   Twitter @AngiMorganAuthr     
Check out my newsletter or follow me on Amazon or BookBub
~ ~ ~
WINNER'S CHOICE FROM MY CRATE
featuring
 NANCY NAIGLE

TERRI OSBURN

ROBIN PERINI

Leave a comment to be entered in a drawing for a book from Angi's crate. 
You'll have to check back and contact us (GetLostInAStory@gmail.com) if you win.
Drawing will be Tuesday 11/26 & posted in comments.
DO YOU LIKE HOLIDAY STORIES? 

11/15/2019

Amanda-Blast to the Past-My first published book

The journey of a writer (this writer, at any rate) has been a series of winding curves, steep mountains, potholes, beautiful scenic views, and more often than not, it requires getting out there to direct traffic and work on the road itself!

Back in 1999, I had come from a variety of jobs since graduating high school and getting married. From librarian to working in a local bookstore, from working in an Actuarial dept and Commissions of a large Insurance Corporation to volunteering and serving on the boards of a number of charitable organizations and then becoming a newspaper columnist/staunch defender of the importance of the Fine Arts in our schools. Amid all of this, I had my family, culminating in our twins born when I was 37.

That's when I found the internet. (Had previously dug my heels in the dirt that we DID NOT need one of those things in our house!) And there I discovered my love of reading and research. I joined online writing groups, took online writing classes, became a reviewer and member of the then Dorothy Parker Reviewers Group.

And the bug bit. A contest challenged me. I wrote (by hand) all through the night (my first draft book!)  Didn't win. More classes. More reading. More learning the craft. My first book was published by a small press called Echelon Press.

That book "Unfinished Dreams" (inspired by Brad Paisley's, "She said Yes" was
a small rural contemporary set in the back roads and small towns of my Midwestern roots. It is my first love, and remains so after some 40+ books.

I've been with a great number of small press over the years, experienced traditional publishing through Harlequin with my Historical work and have in the past few years delved into the world of self-publishing and participating with dozens of great authors through a number of anthology and series projects.

But my first published book remains special in many ways. Not only because its a story of second chances (which I love) it was recognized in Midwest Book Reviews as a featured book with a "Mesmerizing! Very highly recommend" and was slated as one of the books featured on 'syndicated show, BookTalk. It also garnered a  lovely quote from one of my favorite authors which I shall always cherish,"A delightful story, full of charm and warmth!"~Holly Jacobs.

Unfinished Dreams has seen two editions. The most current published in 2015 with some updates to the story. It is close to my heart and the springboard of my small town and second chances romance books--the Kinnison Trilogy, Last Hope Ranch and End of the Line novellas.


Here is a brief overview:
BECAUSE LOVE IS...A WORK IN PROGRESS!

When fate give Tess Graham a second chance at finding happiness after an abusive relationship, will it come unknowingly at the expense of the handsome cowboy she's hired to do a few repairs on the farmhouse she's renting? 

Gabe Russell knows the perky city girl isn't going to last long living the country life, but he doesn't expect that while he's helping make her dreams a reality, that he'll finding himself wanting more than getting his house back.

~MY THANKS TO READERS~
FREE NOVEMBER 15-18



Until next time,
#kindnessmatters
Amanda