Monday, March 3, 2014

GLIAS welcomes back Michelle Major and Romantic Times Top Pick!

GET LOST IN A STORY READERS, I have the distinct privilege of calling the lovely Michelle Major my neighbor and friend.  Which is why I cannot believe I dropped the ball on today's interview, and hope she (and you) will forgive her humble GLIAS correspondent for failing to send her the appropriate questions when she was clearly marked on my calendar.   But enough of my groveling.  Michelle Major doesn't need any help from me.  Today, I'd like to present an author readers will want to get to know and  add to their "Automatic Buy"  lists.

But don't just take my word for it.  Romantic Times called her March 1 release a TOP PICK!!!


HER ACCIDENTAL ENGAGEMENT

When the local police chief comes to a single mom's rescue—with a pretend marriage proposal!—fake sparks become all too real Her Accidental Engagement! 

Julia Morgan is in the midst of a nasty custody battle, trying to prove she provides a stable environment as a single mother for her son, Charlie. When the opposing lawyer starts to play dirty, she has a few tricks up her own sleeve…one that involves the hunky, most eligible bachelor in town. 

As Brevia's police chief, Sam Callahan is used to saving others, so when he sees a cute, sassy blonde in need of help, he gladly plays hero. Not only will pretending to be her fianc√© help Julia's case, it will also get his father off his back about finding "the one." But what happens when pretend doesn't seem so—well—pretend anymore?  

Michelle Major, Author of Love, Life and Happy Endings


EXCERPT:

Julia Morgan lit the final match, determined to destroy the letter clenched in her fingers. She was well aware of the mistakes she'd made in her life, but seeing them typed on fancy letterhead was more than she could take at the moment. She drew the flickering flame toward the paper but another gust of damp wind blew it out.

The mountains surrounding her hometown of Brevia, North Carolina, were notoriously wet in late winter. Even though it hadn't rained for several days, moisture clung to the frigid March air this afternoon, producing a cold she felt right to her bones.

With a frustrated groan, she crumpled the letter into a tiny ball. Add the inability to burn a single piece of paper to her colossal list of failures. Sinking to her knees on the soggy ground, she dropped the used matchstick into a trash bag with all the others.

She ignored the wail of a siren from the highway above her. She'd pulled off the road minutes earlier and climbed down the steep embankment, needing a moment to stop the panic welling inside her.

For a few seconds she focused her attention on the canopy of pine trees below the ridge where she stood, her heartbeat settling to a normal rhythm.

Since she'd returned to her hometown almost two years ago, this love of the forest had surprised her. She'd never been a nature girl, her gypsy existence taking her from one big city to another. Thanks to her beautiful son, Julia was now rooted in Brevia, and the dense woods that enveloped the town gave her the sense of peace she hadn't known she'd missed for years.

The makeshift fire hadn't been much of a plan, but flying by the seat of her pants was nothing new for Julia. With a deep breath, she smoothed the wrinkled letter against the grass. She'd read it compulsively over the past week until the urge to destroy it had overtaken her. She knew the words by heart but needed the satisfaction of watching them go up in flames.

Unfit mother. Seeking custody. Better options.

Tears pricked the backs of her eyes. Burning the letter wouldn't change the potential it had to ruin her life. She'd tried to dismiss the contents as lies and conjecture. In a corner of her heart, she worried they were true and she wouldn't be able to defend herself against them.

Suddenly she was hauled to her feet. "Are you hurt? What happened?" A pair of large hands ran along her bare arms, then down her waist toward…

Whoa, there. "Back off, Andy Griffith," Julia sputtered as parts of her body she thought were in permanent hibernation sprang to life.

As if realizing how tightly he held her, Sam Callahan, Brevia's police chief, pushed away. He stalked several yards up the hill toward the road, then turned and came at her again. Muscles bunched under the shoulders of his police uniform.

She had to work hard to ignore the quick pull of awareness that pulsed through her. Darn good thing Julia had sworn off men. Even better that big, strong alpha men were so not her type.

Julia gave herself a mental headshake. "What do you want, Sam? I'm sort of busy here."

She could have sworn his eye twitched under his aviator sunglasses. He jabbed one arm toward the top of the hill. "What I want is to know what the hell you're doing off the side of the road. Again."

Right. She'd forgotten that the last time Sam had found her, she'd been eight months pregnant and had wrapped her ancient Honda around a tree trunk. He'd taken her to the hospital where her son, Charlie, had been born.

That day a year and a half ago had been the start of a new life for her. One she'd protect at any cost.

Sam had been new to Brevia and the role of police chief then. He'd also been a whole lot nicer. At least, to Julia. He'd made the rounds of the single ladies in town, but ever since Charlie's birth Sam had avoided her as though he thought he might be the first man in history to catch a pregnancy. Which was fine, especially given some of the details she'd heard about his history with women.

"Julia."

At the sound of her name, she focused on his words. "There are skid marks where your car pulled off."

"I was in a hurry," she said and swiped at her still-moist cheeks.

His hands bunched at his sides as he eyed her bag. "Do I smell smoke?"

"I lit a match. Lots of them." Her chin hitched. "Wanna call Smokey Bear for backup?"

He muttered something under his breath at the same time a semi roared by on the road above.

"I didn't quite catch that."

Sam removed his sunglasses and tucked them into the front pocket of his shirt. He was almost too good-looking, his blond hair short but a little messy, as if he needed a trim. The effect softened his classically handsome features and a square jaw that fell just short of comic-book chiseled. His gaze slammed into hers, and Julia knew if ice could turn molten, it would be the exact color of Sam's blue eyes.

"You were on your knees," he said slowly.

Julia swallowed. "I lost a contact."

"You don't wear contacts."

"How do you.? Never mind." She bent to retrieve the bag of worthless matches.

His finger brushed the back of her arm. "What are you doing out here, Jules?"

Something about the sound of her name soft as a whisper broke through her defenses. She straightened and waved the letter at him. "I have a meeting in town and needed some fresh air to collect my thoughts."

"At the salon?"

She shook her head. "No. Hair dye doesn't require much mental fortitude. I have a real meeting, with an attorney."

He didn't ask for details but continued to watch her.

"It's about Charlie," she offered after a minute. "About my custody." To add to her humiliation, she choked on the last word.

"You're his mother. Of course you have custody."

"I know." She lifted the letter. "But Jeff and his parents think-"

"Who's Jeff?"

"My ex-boyfriend." She sighed. "Charlie's father." Sam's eyes narrowed. "The one who's never set eyes on him?"


Off to buy my copy.  How about you?  But wait, there's more.  Since Michelle's not here, I get to ask readers a question on her behalf . . .


I know first hand that Michelle is a sucker for pets.  She LOVES animals, and she and Indiana Jones have nothing in common.  One day when we were talking she sent her kids into my backyard to keep them busy.  Her suggestion to coax them...."You might want to go into Mrs. Bell's backyard.  I think there's some snakes back there."  And off they ran!

So here's my question for Readers, and I'll do a book giveaway of HER ACCIDENTAL ENGAGEMENT in either paperback or digital (US only for paperback please.) 

What's your favorite pet?  And when it comes to snakes, are you more like Indiana Jones or Michelle Major?


Michelle Major Contact Information:



Twitter:  @michelle_major1


31 comments:

  1. Guess I get to be first today. My favorite pet is a cat. Sadly, tho', I'm allergic and can't have one around anymore. My dream is to own a riding mule--my granddad trained them and taught me to love them--but I don't think they'd qualify as pets. As to snakes, I'm fine with them, as long as they don't rattle their tails at me.

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    1. Ha! Nancy, I'll wager Michelle would love you. I love cats too. A riding mule, that's certainly different. Thanks for stopping by!

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    2. Hi Nancy - we did a camping trip last summer and one of the guides was riding a mule - so cool! I agree about the rattles!

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  2. This book sounds lovely!!!
    My favorite pet is a cat. They love you unconditionally, most of the time, and they are not high maintenance. lol I am definitely like Indie as far as snakes! I am terrified of them! Going into actual panic attacks if I accidentally stumble upon one! lol

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    1. duly noted. no snakes for Karen J!

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    2. Hi Karen - Oh, no on the snakes. I was kind of that way until my son fell in love with them (no joke) when he was a toddler so I've learned to live with them (literally!)

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  3. God gave me girls for a reason. :) I'll take kittens and dogs any day rather than the snakes and crawly things that fascinate my grandsons. Good morning, ladies . . . hope life is treating you well . . .

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    1. Hi Mimi - Thanks for the comment! The funny thing is that my daughter has no fear of anything - probably to keep up with her big brother!

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  4. What a great excerpt. Thanks for sharing...

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  5. Loved this book! And I am definitely a dog person, despite all the dog hair!

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    1. I'm with you on the dog hair, Lana!

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  6. Can't wait to read this one! And I am with Harrison Ford, all the way! Snakes give me the willies- even if they are only on the television! I'll take a puppy anyday! :)

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    1. Even on the television, Jennie? That's very Indiana Jones of you. :-)

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  7. This book sounds like a fun read. I plan to pick up my copy when I'm finished here. Congrats on your wonderful RT rateing. Way to go! As for pets, I love cats and dogs and have had both through the years. Today, my cat owns and trains me and when he feels like it he'll come snuggle with me, but that's only when he's in the mood. This cat has a mind of his own. The snakes, you can keep. They give me the creeps.

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    1. Thanks, Jude. Our cat is the same way - she's the boss of the whole house (including our 2 dogs!).

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  8. Awwww man, I was really getting into that excerpt!! Poor Julia. I hope she gets to keep her son Charlie. That Sam sounds handsome!!

    I love animals...all kinds. I love lions and elephants and birds and tigers, etc. But I guess for practicality purposes I'd have to say I love dogs. They are so sweet and loyal. I don't particularly care for snakes unless they are in a cage where I can safely observe them. Some of them are quite beautiful to look at.

    Liglesias3 [at] gmail [dot] com

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    1. Thanks, Laurie. I have to say I loved writing Julia!! You're right about how beautiful snakes can be - I also prefer them behind glass. :-)

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  9. Now, I have to buy another book. Tell Michelle I'm hooked. Pets. I love horses and dogs and have neither. We have an alpha male cockatiel. Snakes? As a kid in Indiana (yes, I was born in Indiana), I caught snakes to keep as pets in my Dad's old minnow bucket. My mother wouldn't let me bring the bucket in the house, not even on the back porch. I'd always release the snake in a few days and always well before cold weather so the creature could find a hidey hole before cold weather.

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    1. Awww...thanks, Karalee! My daughter would love to have a cockateil! I grew up in Ohio so we were neighbors back in the day. :-)

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  10. Don't have one
    Maybe like Indiana

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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    1. Thanks for the comment. Lots of Indiana Jones people here. Ha!

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  11. Totally okay with snakes. Taught my kids how to tell if they're poisonous and how to catch them if they aren't.

    This book sounds amazing! Congrats on the Top Pick status. Popping over to order my copy right now!

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    1. Jodi - Wow, that's impressive!!! My son knows how to tell by I try not to get close enough for it to matter. :-)

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  12. Hi everyone - I can't get seem to add replies to individual emails but will keep trying. Thanks for all the comments! I so appreciate them. Donnell is right - we love animals (and reptiles) of all kinds at my house. It's fun to see what people do and don't like - I might need to write a pet snake into a book sometime!!! Thanks, Donnell, for having me here - love visiting with you!

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  13. I love the sound of this book and the excerpt, Michelle!

    I'm a cat person. We don't have any pets at the moment as the family recovers from losing our 17 y.o. kittyboy, Curry, over a year ago. We're just not ready for another one yet.

    Marcy Shuler
    bmndshuler(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. I forgot this, but I'm like Indiana Jones about snakes! *shudder*

      Marcy

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    2. Thanks, Marcy! So sad when you have to say goodbye to a pet. Hope your heart continues to recover.

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  14. I hope I'm forgiven my terrible error, Michelle, but I think you did okay. I can't wait to read Her Accidental Engagement. Here's to much success, and enjoy every moment!

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  15. I have 3 cats now, but my favorite pet is my sweet Sheltie Dallas who passed away in 2009. She was the best dog and she made it to 15.

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  16. Congratulations Marcy Shuler. You have won Michelle Major's Her Accidental Engagement!

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