Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Lizbeth's Top Ten Wedding Songs for a BRIDE who wore RED BOOTS

Hi Get Lost in a Story Friends and Family!

I’m so excited to welcome you to the book birthday celebration for my newest release THE BRIDE WORE RED BOOTS. This is the second book in my new Seven Brides for Seven Cowboys series from Avon, and I’m so thrilled with the reception the stories are getting.

Seven Brides  is the chronicle of the Crockett sisters—all heirs to  Paradise Ranch, one of the largest cattle spreads in Wyoming. The only trouble is—once they hit college age, every sister left home and never returned. Each one found success away from the world of cows, horses, ranch life AND cowboys. But when their father dies unexpectedly, they all travel home and each one has to find her reason for staying.

RED BOOTS is oldest sister Amelia’s story. Mia is a hard-driven, exceptionally talented surgeon in New York City. But when an expected promotion isn’t given to her, she takes her red cowboy boots and heads home to Paradise  Ranch. There she runs headlong into Gabriel Harrison, a patient advocate at the Veteran’s hospital where her sister is recuperating after an auto accident.

Gabe pushes all of Mia’s annoyance buttons, but the sparks that fly between them of course lead straight to love. It’s not necessarily a love that solves all their problems. At first.

I’ll be posting some excerpts and different giveaways the next two days. But since these are books about brides (or soon-to-be brides), what more appropriate way to start the wedding celebration than with music?  I want to share my favorite wedding songs with you and find out about yours!

I love wedding music, and I have to admit that I’m still a sucker for some of the most traditional songs out there, especially when it comes to entrances and recessionals. They might border on the corny to some, but I still get goose bumps when I hear Wagner’s Bridal Chorus (aka Here Comes the Bride) at the start of any wedding ceremony. And the same for Mendelssohn’s Wedding March at the end for a recessional.   

But having to “plan” a couple of weddings for my book series has led me to think about the more contemporary songs I love to hear performed during a service. And of course I’ve come up with a list of songs my heroines and their heroes might choose for their weddings. Here are my top ten favorite wedding songs. Hope you enjoy!

10. “Come What May” from the movie Moulin Rouge. This is such an epic tune and just the words make me cry. Everyone should have a love that fits these words. (Click on the link that's underlined in the box if you want to listen to this one!)

9. “Maybe I’m Amazed” by Paul McCartney. Again—this just has such epic love lyrics. I wish Paul had written it for me!

8. “I Swear” by John Michael Montgomery. This was pretty cliché at weddings for a while in the early 90s, but listen to the words and you know it could be brought back anytime!

7. “Everything” by Michael Buble. I love this. So upbeat and yet meaningful. This is what lovers/partners should be to each other. (Click on the link that's underlined in the box if you want to listen to this one!)

6. “Longer” by Dan Fogelberg. Another really towering song lyrically. “Deeper than any forest primeval . . .”  You can’t really get much deeper in love than that!

5. “Grow Old With Me” by John Lennon (Mary Chapin Carpenter). I love this song but it’s bittersweet, of course, because John never did have the chance to grow old with his love. Still, the sentiment (taken from a Robert Browning poem) is something we all have when we choose the love of our lives.

4. “When I Say I Do” by Matthew West. This is an amazing song that goes directly to the meaning of vows and knowing that you really mean to honor them. It’s pretty much perfect!
3.”Annie’s Song” by John Denver. One of my favorite songs about how love completes and fills you. There’s just something so peaceful that touches my ‘love is forever’ soul. 

2. “Marry You” by Bruno Mars. I have simply fallen in love with this song. It’s so simple. It’s so positive and there’s nothing fake or overwrought about it. It’s just a great counterpoint to all the wonderful but super-serious meaningful songs. This is the “recessional” song I used for the first wedding in Seven Brides. (You’ll find it in Book 3 THE BRIDE WORE STARLIGHT coming out in February!) 

And finally, here is my Number One favorite wedding song of all time:
1. “There Is Love (The Wedding Song)” by Noel Paul Stookey (Paul of Peter, Paul, and Mary). There are so many reasons I love this song and have listed it as number one. It speaks not only to love but to my faith. And most special of all to me, it’s the song my husband and I had sung at our wedding back in 1974. I was just nineteen years old and nobody thought I was old enough to know what I was doing. This song was my way of saying I definitely did—to my family and my groom. And—we’ll be celebrating 41 years this month, so I guess the song was (one of many) good luck charms for us!

So there you have it—my top ten. But I’d love to hear your favorites, too. Or tell me what music was performed at your (or a friend’s) wedding that you still love! Today I have an e-copy of Book #1 in this series THE BRIDE WORE DENIM for one lucky commenter!

And here are links to THE BRIDE WORE RED BOOTS--Hope you enjoy!!

Book Birthday, Book Birthday! It's release day for THE BRIDE WORE RED BOOTS (in case I haven't bugged you enough about it --here it is again!) As an added bonus--today is also the PAPERBACK release day for THE BRIDE WORE DENIM. It's a 2-brides Birthday! Let's celebrate with a two-book giveaway! I have a special surprise signed Avon book by one of your fave Avon authors -- oh, okay, it's one of Jennifer Bernard's fabulous Bachelor Fireman books: Four Weddings and a Fireman! Plus a brand new signed paperback of The Bride Wore Denim from me smile emoticon Tell me what the best (or most unique) birthday party you've ever been to!

Monday, August 31, 2015

E.E. Burke's BEST OF THE WEST: New Release from Award-Winning Author Jacqui Nelson

We're in for a real treat today. An exclusive look at a brand new series from multi-award winning author Jacqui Nelson.

"Thank you Elisabeth and Get Lost in a Story for inviting me back to your blog! The last time I was here I shared an upcoming release that I believed would be ready very soon (in a month or two). Well, it’s almost a year later and finally that book is ready! Between Love & Lies released yesterday, August 30th."

Purchase on Amazon
In a town ruled by sin, will he earn her love or her lies?

Sadie Sullivan lost everything when a herd of longhorn cattle bound for Dodge City trampled and destroyed her farm. Now she works in Dodge—one of the most wicked and lawless towns in the West—at the Northern Star Saloon. But her survival in this new world of sin and violence depends on maintaining a lie so deadly it could end her life before the town of Dodge can.

The one man capable of unraveling all of Sadie's secrets is Noah Ballantyne, the Texan rancher whose herd destroyed her home. Back in town and taking up the role of deputy alongside legendary lawman Bat Masterson, Noah vows he won't leave until he's made things right. But with the saloon’s madam unwilling to release Sadie and a rich cattle baron wanting her as well, the odds aren’t good for finding love…or leaving town alive.

Here's a never-before-seen excerpt:

     Noah swore under his breath. “I’m getting you out of Dodge if I have to carry you out.”

     “The first chance I got, I’d leave you and come back.”      
     The silence that followed gnawed at Sadie’s resolve not to give in to him in any way. But it was her dread of what she might see if she looked at him that kept her gaze pinned on the door.
     “You’d rather stay here than leave with me?” he asked in a much too quiet voice.
     “I’d rather say goodbye to Dodge on my own terms. That way I won’t be a whore—to you or anyone else.”
     “It’s too late for that.”
     His words hit her like a slap in the face, rocking her on her heels. She squeezed shut her eyes to hide her pain from him.
     “Damn it, Sadie.” His breath left him in hiss. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have said that. I don’t think of you as a—”
     She forced herself to cut him off. “I work in a saloon with a brothel above it. Don’t lie to yourself. I’m a whore. But right now my illness saves me from those duties. The doctor, Gertie, Cora— If I do what they say, they leave me alone, and so do the men. If you had control over one thing in your life, would you give it up?”
     “Sadie, you can’t go on like this. Whatever happened when you first came to work at the Star, it doesn’t have to be like that. Let me show you.”
     Disbelief made her gaze careen back to his. He couldn’t mean—
     “Will you listen to reason?” he asked.
     “You haven’t said anything reasonable.”
     “You’re right. I was never good with words, but I’ll listen. Tell me to stop and I will.”
     For every stride he moved closer, she took one back until the wall against her spine halted her. He planted one palm on the faded wallpaper next to her head. She waited for him to raise his other hand and hem her in. He didn’t. He’d given her a chance to escape.
     She didn’t take it. She was too busy trying to stop herself from leaning into his strength. “I was fine before you came along, last week and a year ago on my farm.” Her growing anticipation made her thoughts tumble out uncensored. “Every time you show up, you kick the foundation from under everything I’ve struggled to build.”
     He leaned down until his lips hovered over hers. “Let me make it up to you. Let me in, Sadie.” 

Meet Jacqui
Jacqui Nelson writes historical romantic adventures set in the American West. Her stories include an Oregon Trail scout, an ex-Rebel spy turned government rabble rouser, and a Dodge City cardsharp gambling with life and death. Those are her heroines. Wait till you meet her heroes! Her love for the Old West came from watching classic Western movies while growing up on a cattle farm. She’s been nominated for over 20 awards and won the Romance Writers of America® Golden Heart® for historical romance & the Laramie® for western romance drama.

Here's where you can find her and her books:


E.E.: What is your hero and heroine’s “kryptonite”? What will bring them instantly to their knees?
Jacqui: Last time I shared my hero, Noah’s kryptonite—the guilt he carries and can’t ignore. This time I’ll add my heroine, Sadie’s—she’s determined to keep her vow to her friend, but unfortunately doing so might be the quick route to a grave in Boot Hill.

E.E.: Who’s your favorite villain?
Jacqui: My favorite villain is Al Swearengen (played by Ian McShane) in the Old West TV series Deadwood. Sometimes cutthroat, other times compassionate, Al is one complex individual and the fact that he has an equally complex right-hand man named Dan...well, that makes things even better.

E.E.: Which of your characters would you most like to invite to dinner?
Jacqui: A year ago, I chose legendary lawman Bat Masterson because he was the most fun to write. His meddling ways and sharp wit really had me smiling.

This time around, I’ll choose my villain’s right-hand man. Handsome John works for the madam who owns the Northern Star Saloon and all the girls working there—including Sadie. Sadie describes John as a “box herder” who keeps the girls inline if they get any ideas of independence. John’s full of surprises though. He also has his fair share of scars. I added the Handsome to his name because he’s the opposite of that. The same way Little John (in Robin Hood) isn’t little.

E.E.: Describe an absolutely perfect day.
Jacqui: Sleep in and then write all day in my pajamas. Start with coffee (to get me going) and end with a glass of wine (to celebrate being one day closer to finishing another story).

E.E.: If you could interview one person, who would it be?
Jacqui: Annie Oakley because I’m planning to make my heroine (in Book 2 of my Gambling Hearts series) a sharpshooter who joins a Wild West show and then comes home to the quiet life where she grew up—the land around Noah and Lewis’ ranches. My “little sure shot” heroine thinks Lewis’ land is hers. Who will win? Maybe they both will :)

E.E.: Were there any last minute changes to Between Love & Lies?
Jacqui: In the last hour of editing, I changed the name of my doctor (who will be the hero of Book 3 in my Gambling Hearts series). He went from Isaac Ingram to Doctor Rhodes. I don’t know why, but he just did. I don’t mention Doctor Rhodes’ first name in Book 1, but I’ll tell you here...it’s Theodore, or Theo.

E.E.: You’ve written a novella in the Steam! Romance and Rails series. Does your new story have any trains?
Jacqui: Yes! There’s a scene where Sadie decides she can no longer stay in Dodge, and she executes a well-planned escape via a cattle train bound for the Union Stockyards in Chicago. The best laid plans usually go wrong, and they do for Sadie.

E.E.: Complete this sentence. When I want to relax, I. . .
Jacqui: Go to my mom’s house and have a beer with her in her beautiful garden. Chances are high that if you’re following me on Facebook, you’ll have seen one of my drinking-in-the-garden photos.

E.E.: Does you hero or heroine have a trusty horse?
Jacqui: Noah has a faithful gray named Pepper. He’s called Pepper because he had a lot of sass and spice when he was young, but now he’s older and steadfast, just like Noah. They’ve been together so long they can sense each other’s wishes. Noah’s riding Pepper when his herd of longhorns destroys Sadie’s farm. And a year later, Pepper carries Noah back up the hundreds of miles between Texas and Dodge in search of Sadie.

Today, Jacqui is giving away a FREE ebook, Between Love and Lies, Book 1 of the Gambling Hearts series. Share your favorite Western book, movie, TV series or actor—John Wayne, Client Eastwood, Anson Mount—or just say hello!

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